Knives Out was one of my favorite movies of 2019. The movie was made with such attention to detail that it was a joy watching it and trying to figure out the mystery as it unraveled – and following the crazy colorful characters of the movie.
In Glass Onion, Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is faced with another mystery. A group of rich friends take their annual trip together, sponsored by the incredibly rich and influential Miles Bron (Edward Norton). Among the friends is a filter-less somewhat washed up influencer, Birdie Jay (Kate Hudson) and her assistant, Peg (Jessica Henwick); another influencer, Duke Cody (Dave Bautista) and his girlfriend Whiskey (Madelyn Cline); a scientist, Lionel Toussaint (Leslie Odom Jr.); a politician, Claire Debella (Kathryn Hahn); and Bron’s ex-business partner, Andi Brand (Janelle Monáe). I won’t write more as it will spoil things with the movie.
This movie was a fun and fantastic mystery full of colorful and memorable characters. Glass Onion is not as good as the first, mainly because the first film was unique in its own right and setup a “Knives Out” formula. While Glass Onion is entertaining, I walked in already having an inkling that it would follow a similar formula as the first. There were enough twists in Glass Onion to keep it entertaining, but new car shine and joy of discovery was not there.
The other problem was that the film spends the first act carefully laying out plot points that would eventually get tied up nicely by the end of the movie. In order to do this, the film doles out information slowly and withholds information that would have made it more fun to piece together while the movie is running. Instead, I was left for stretches of time wondering what was going on and what the mystery was.
Daniel Craig is again wonderful as the detective, but it is Kate Hudson as the vain, imbecilic influencer that steals the show. Dave Bautista is basically playing a version of the same character he is always playing, but is fun to watch nevertheless. Janelle Monáe is great as the cold and unfeeling Andi. Edward Norton does well making us dislike him. The rest of the cast is wasted though, especially Jessica Henwick who seems to have exactly nothing to do in the movie.
There were a lot of cameos in the film and many references to other films – like the painting in the house of Edward Norton that references Fight Club. There were so many red herrings thrown at the audience throughout the movie, but having said that, the clues for who was the murderer were well laid out throughout the movie and I did not feel cheated by the final reveal.
The editing of the film is tight and the way that the film is structured outside of a weaker first act, made for a fun watch. The film also looks gorgeous. The set design, the costumes and the cinematography all come together perfectly to give the audience something to enjoy in each frame of the movie.
I enjoyed Glass Onion and will be watching it again on Netflix to try to catch things that I missed the first time around.
Watched at Oakridge Cinemark 20.
I wish Rian Johnson did not sign with Netflix to make this movie because it limited the theatrical release to only a week. It also locks the movie to Netflix, with no physical way of owning the movie.