We have the sequel to the 2019 smash hit Knives Out, set to hit select theaters in Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery before hitting Netflix at the end of the year. Does the movie live up to the original? I will share my thoughts on the film and let you know.
Glass Onion follows the story of detective Benoit Blanc who has to travel to Greece to solve his latest case. The movie sees the return of writer/director Rian Johnson, with Daniel Craig as Benoit Blanc, but a brand new cast includes Edward Norton, Kate Hudson, Leslie Odom Jr., Kathryn Hayn, Dave Bautista, and Janelle Monáe.
One of the challenges about writing reviews for movies of this nature is that I want to tell you how I feel about the movie, but without revealing any spoilers. So this will be 100% spoiler-free as I will talk about aspects of the film I liked, performances that stood out, and my overall thoughts.
Early on, we see Benoit Blanc struggling with the pandemic. He is stuck in his bathtub playing games on his iPad that he isn’t good at. While sulking in the tub, he gets a package at the door that will finally get him out of the house and return to being the world’s best detective. Upon his arrival at the lavation land of the Glass Onion, we quickly find out that Benoit is onto something.
We all fell in love with Daniel Craig as Benoit Blanc in the original film, but this man kicks it up a notch (as Emeril Lagasse would say) in Glass Onion. Johnson’s quick-witted writing of Blanc within the film truly stands out because there was pressure to make this character equally as good or, if not better, than the first. Sure, the supporting cast matters, but B.lanc is the star of the show, and Johnson never wavers from that (well, maybe a little, more on that later). With this second go at the character, Craig felt more comfortable and more in the driver’s seat this time.
Janelle Monáe belongs in the Best Supporting Actress conversation for Glass Onion
When Glass Onion debuted, all you heard was how great Janelle Monáe was in the film. Heck, there is even chatter that she belongs in the Oscars conversation. So when you set those expectations high, you want those expectations to be fulfilled. I am here to tell you that she not only meets those expectations, but knocks them out of the ballpark. Glass Onion has a more intentional comedic tone to the film than Knives Out did. However, within that comedic tone stands Monáe, whose character Andi Brand is the vocal point of the film, having to give a more serious performance. Monáe gives a convincingly strong performance in the role that is very much award-worthy.
The supporting cast is brilliant. There is not a single bad performance in the group here, and even a bunch of fun cameos from people that catch you completely off guard. Norton is brilliant in his Elon Musk-like role, Kate Hudson needs to be in more things, Hahn is Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr. is one of the best actors in Hollywood, and Dave Bautista continues to thrive in ways that only he can. Brilliant casting by Rian Johnson.
I can’t give enough credit for how Rian Johnson pieced together the perfect murder mystery for a SECOND time. He has set up a franchise and character that we could watch for years. However, one of the things I loved the most was the comedic tone I mentioned earlier. While it has some of the same tones as the original, it felt like a film that stands out on its own. Dare I say that it has more re-watchability than the first?
Another thing I loved was not just the score, but the soundtrack had me wanting to sing and dance in my chair. It was an extra layer of things that the first didn’t have that made this one stand out. It’s great because each of these movies has the chance to have a different genre to them that makes them unique and fun to watch. Please make a hundred of them, Rian.
Overall, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery is the perfect whodunnit that sees the return of our favorite detective in Benoit Blanc. A strong script and a fantastic cast make this movie one of the year’s best films. I can’t wait to revisit this movie over again and again.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery hits select theaters on Nov. 23, with the film hitting Netflix on Dec. 23.