Knives Out (2019)

I have desparately tried to avoid any spoilers writing this review as this is a movie I fully recommend people watch without any prior knowledge. So this is a safe place to read for some spoiler-free insight before diving into the world Rian Johnson created on screen.

Johnson created near enough a masterpiece with this whodunnit film. With a star-studded cast, twists and turns at every corner as well as an incredibly thought-out plot and sprinkles of well placed comedy this is the type of movie people will be recommending to their friends for a while now.

To see a movie so cleverly created and planned is refreshing in this day and age of remakes, sequels and flops. The fact that such a clever movie was a crime drama is something that ticks a very specific box for myself, as I have always felt crime drama’s have never been taken too seriously or when they are the expectations are far too high. This film, however, meets each expectation and more.

We start with the death of elderly Harlan, the patriarch of the family, and we dive into the depths of lies, twists and shock reveals that finally lead to an answer that I won’t spoil because where is the fun in that? If anybody tells you that they caught each and every twist this movie provided, then you are well within your right to say “You’re a liar, good sir.” because not a chance did they catch everything. I’m very familiar and fond of crime, drama, even simple whodunnit media. I often claim that I have never once lost a game of Cluedo (and I stand by that to this day). Yet, even I was unable to catch half the hints that were dripped to us viewers throughout. The few that I did I noted, told my boyfriend I had spotted them, had to refrain myself from looking them up because I just wanted more information. The ones that I didn’t notice however made me so happy, yes I had an inkling of what happened but so many different factors threw me off track on multiple occasions.

It felt like each sentence, even such a small comment, could mean something vital for this story. So if I have one recommendation going into this film, its that you must pay attention to exactly what is said.

The comedy was not distasteful or obtrusive, it was very clever and witty much like the rest of the film. The script was written so wonderfully that it’s no wonder the actor’s were able to deliver the lines so effortlessly. Although, it likely also helps that the cast were so experienced and accredited already that I’m sure not much is difficult for many of them now. Daniel Craig has always been a good actor, but my worry for him going into James Bond when he did was that he would be type-casted constantly as the stoic British man. This movie proved me wrong, of course, there’s not a hint of British in his accent and he actually seems to care. The accent was initially jarring, I’ll be honest, although it doesn’t take long to get used to it. Only on occasional moments where the accent grew thicker and a little harder to understand did you remember Daniel Craig is actually a very British man.

Chris Evans always entertains me, he has never failed to in any of his previous works, so the fact that I had a soft-spot for his character Ransom the entire time is no surprise to me or those who know me. One of my favorite aspects of Evans’ work is that in each production he takes part in, he is a completely different character, Captain America is no Curtis from Snowpiercer, and Ransom is no Ari from The Red Sea Diving Resort, is what I’m trying to say. He brings flavor, character and light to each performance he gives and I will always praise for that, until he stops doing so.

I was a little wary about Katherine Langford’s casting when going into this movie, only because I have not liked any of her previous works. Quickly, however, I realised that perhaps it was never Langford that bothered me, in these previous works, but the works themself as Langford’s acting was great in Knives Out. She truly has the voice for an actress, her lines don’t feel forced or fake, they feel natural which is surprisingly a difficult thing for many actors and actresses to manage.

Ana De Armas of course carried this movie, her fantastic acting and the softness in everything she did made you feel a close connection to this character. She bounced off of each individual she worked alongside, and she delivered each line and carried out each scene with an evident professionalism and joy that you had no choice but to enjoy yourself.

My one complaint in regards to the actors and actresses of this movie, is that whilst Jamie Lee Curtis was fantastic and incredible as always, there was definitely not enough screen-time for her to show her acting capabilities to their fullest extent.

Overall, Knives Out was fantastic and I highly recommend anybody who likes plot-twists, smart writing, witty drama’s and watching chaotic families, to give this a movie a go. Whilst at times the viewer may think to themself, “Wait, is this movie not over yet?” It’s never in a bad way, it’s simply in shock that there is still more to be unravelled. There is also a moment, around half way through the movie, in which the viewer may believe that the creator’s played his hand too quickly, but believe me, you soon realise that there is far more up their sleeve and you will not be disappointed.

8/10

~ Becky

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