Knives Out: LFF Film Review

Knives Out was the film I was most excited to see at LFF – I love a whodunnit and the ensemble cast was insane – so I’m happy to report that I really enjoyed it.

Murder mystery novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) is found dead on the morning after his 85th birthday party and everyone who attended the bash is a suspect – from his daughter (Jamie Lee Curtis), her husband Richard (Don Johnson) and their son Ransom (Chris Evans), Harlan’s son Walt (Michael Shannon), daughter-in-law Joni (Toni Collette), her daughter Meg (Katherine Langford) and his nurse Marta (Ana de Armas). Famous private detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) leads the investigation into the crime.

Rian Johnson has written and directed a whodunnit that pays homage to Agatha Christie and her classics starring Hercule Poirot but doesn’t feel derivative. It’s a fresh, modern take on the classic murder mystery.  There are plenty of twists and turns, although I must say I found the resolution of the central death a bit disappointing. Thankfully, the plot had already thickened by that point and there was much more going on.

The writing is incredible. Johnson has created an interesting line-up of characters who each have their own secrets and grievances with other family members. Their interweaving relationships are crafted so well. I loved learning more about each of them, particularly the gossip! The dialogue is whipsmart and made me laugh a lot. It needs to get a screenplay nomination if nothing else.

This cast is truly an embarrassment of riches – so many actors I love in one film! I had no idea that de Armas would have the most screentime and essentially be the lead in this ensemble so that was a lovely surprise. She’s been amazing in supporting roles so I’m glad she got the chance to shine. The other standouts for me were Evans, playing a total douche and the antithesis to Captain America – so refreshing – and Craig, who has an intriguing thick Southern accent. He was hilarious!

I had the highest expectations for Knives Out and I felt a little disappointed by it. Not because it was bad, but because I had convinced myself the reveals would blow my mind and they didn’t. They were still unexpected and thrilling though. It also went on a bit towards the end and I was ready for things to be wrapped up. But those are minor quibbles. Knives Out is a cleverly made, entertaining film with an extraordinary cast.

Seen during the 2019 London Film Festival. Scheduled to hit cinemas on 27 November. 

Rating: 4/5

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  1. […] and Chris Evans as potential suspects. Definitely worth checking out. You can read my review here. In cinemas 29th […]

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