Knives Out

***

Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Knives Out
"As a whodunit, the film is fun and forgettable." | Photo: © 2018 MRC II Distribution Company L.P. All rights reserved.

Agatha Goes West fits better as a tempting title than Bond Loses James In Christie Copy.

Body in attic bedroom. Wow, that's new!

Copy picture

Looks like suicide which means it''s not. Knock knock, someone at the door. It's James. You mean Craig (Daniel). Of course!

Kentucky Fried accent, name of Benoit Blanc, a private eye. French? Canadian? Why's he here? What's he doing?

It stops making sense about now. Tainment enters left. The cast is star studded. The body belongs to Christopher Plummer. He was playing a thriller writer, v successful, v rich, about to celebrate his 80th birthday. Now he's dead, cut his own throat apparently - not the tidiest or most likely for a 79-year-old - and suddenly on cue arrives blankety Blanc who isn't French and insists he was hired by someone unknown and paid in advance in readies.

The whole family is here and almost everyone has a motive for murder as the movie follows the Christie formula, which is keep suspects together in a drawing room or on a train so that interrogation and elimination can occur organically until the final denouement when the detective, often an eccentric fellow with a foreign accent, announces the result.

Writer/director Rian Johnson is Maryland born and Californian bred, now in his thirties with Looper and The Last Jedi packed neatly in his CV wallet, he could hardly be further from the facts of post-war British detective fiction, dominated by the great ladies of the genre, but nevertheless remains faithful to the rules of the game.

With Don Johnson, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette, Chris Evans and Michael Shannon on the cast list it is the lesser known Havana trained Ana de Armas as Marta, the dead man's personal assistant and medical advisor, who becomes the most important person in the story after Blank who watches and waits and makes sure the accent doesn't slip.

As a whodunit, the film is fun and forgettable. Whodidit?

Forgotten already. Sorry...

Reviewed on: 04 Dec 2019
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A detective is called into investigate the mysterious death of a renowned crime writer.

Festivals:

London 2019

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