Three years after the release of the excellent murder-mystery movie, Knives Out, today sees the arrival of a sequel in the shape of Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery. The movie – from writer/director (and co-producer) Rian Johnson – is another whodunnit, which stars Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe, Kathryn Hahn, Kate Hudson, Dave Bautista, Ethan Hawke, and Leslie Odom Jr.
Similar to the first film, and pretty much every mystery movie of note, Glass Onion revolves around an ensemble of characters, who find themselves caught up in a spot of murder. This time around, the action takes place on a private Greek island, which provides a stunning backdrop to a dash of death in paradise.
In the movie, tech billionaire Miles Bron invites a group of friends to his island to take part in a murder-mystery party. The attendees include an array of high-profile movers and shakers, from the Governor of Connecticut to a YouTube star, with the guest list also including Detective Benoit Blanc.
But what starts off as a fun affair, and a chance to kick-back and indulge in a mind-bending game, soon descends into something far more sinister when one of the guests is murdered for real. From here on out, it is up to Blanc to investigate the murder, question the suspects, and solve the case.
Now, for those who are unaware, the original Knives Out was both a critical and commercial hit when it was released back in 2019, which meant a sequel was pretty much inevitable. Audiences knew it, writer/director Rian Johnson probably knew it, and the movie’s distributer Lionsgate certainly knew it, with the studio going so far as to greenlight a sequel within months of the film’s release.
However, between the time that Lionsgate said “yes” to a Knives Out sequel, and to where we are now, the project changed hands, with Netflix picking it up instead. The streaming giant then announced it would be backing not one, but two sequels, beginning in late 2022 with the first of these follow-ups being Glass Onion.
To date, there has been no further details on the third Knives Out movie, which Netflix is pretty much committed to anyway, but presumably this is because the streaming service is waiting to see how well this second instalment does first. However, judging by how much anticipation there is for Glass Onion, as well as how good this movie is, I doubt Netflix has anything to worry about.
Glass Onion is a sharp, satirical, smart whoodunnit, with a fine cast, some marvellously funny moments, and an intricately woven plot. The film takes a straightforward mystery, turns things on its head a touch, elevates the initial premise, and delivers one of the slickest, most enjoyable movies of the year.
If you loved Knives Out, you’ll love Glass Onion just as much – possibly even more. It is an Agatha Christie-style yarn, which is perfect for a contemporary audience, and boy, did I adore every moment of it.
As with its predecessor, Glass Onion boasts an ensemble cast of familiar faces, who are all brought together to dazzle, delight, and take part in a spot of misdirection. Of course, everyone is a suspect, and audiences are encouraged to work out who the killer is, but thanks to the superb collection of actors on display, everyone is as equally as compelling (and possibly murderous) as the next.
From Kate Hudson’s supermodel turned fashion designer, to Edward Norton’s ego-tastic billionaire, all of the cast are excellent. Each actor helps to deepen the central mystery, each makes their character just as obnoxious and unlikable as the next (in turn, making them a prime suspect), and all deserve recognition.
However, the two standout stars of Glass Onion are Janelle Monáe, who shines as a disgruntled guest, and Daniel Craig who is once again an absolute hoot as Benoit Blanc. Monáe excels at everything she is given to do in the movie, while Craig knocks it out of the park as Blanc, delivering plenty of humour, along with a fab bit of detective work.
If Netflix keep making Knives Out movies beyond this second instalment, as well as the planned third helping, I hope Craig remains a continual presence. He is so much fun to watch, he appears to be having a ball as the super-sleuth, and I can’t imagine one of these films without him.
And the same goes for Rian Johnson, who has now successfully penned and helmed two of these pictures, and both are equally magnificent. Johnson’s attention to detail, as well as his clever writing continue to drive this film series forward, in interesting and captivating ways.
Knives Out could have been a one-trick pony, but Glass Onion proves there is plenty of scope for this series to expand and develop further. Johnson has lots to say with his movies, and lots to offer, and I am here for it all.
Should you wish to check out Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, and you really should, the movie is playing in select cinemas from today, but for one week and one week only. The movie then slides onto Netflix from December 23rd, just in time for Christmas.