A hugely enjoyable sequel – News Kidda

Expressing your enthusiasm for Glass OnionRian Johnson’s sequel to Blades off, presents a dilemma. Is it possible to state that it is more enjoyable in most respects (and neck-and-neck in most others) without sounding dismissive of the thoroughly delightful original? Would it help to add that if you leave this film, re-watching the first will only make it more appealing? (And that’s for someone who just revisited knives again last week.)

This shot offers more action, more delicious rewards, more daring design, and some really surprising cameos, just for the record. Still, it doesn’t suffer from the usual “give them the same, but more of the” bloating that’s common in sequels to surprise hits. The ensemble is more varied than knives‘, and his critique of the clueless rich that is more relevant to our time.

Glass Onion: A Knife Mystery

It comes down to

Even more fun than the first.

Location: Toronto International Film Festival (special presentations)
Publication date: Friday December 23 (Netflix)
Form: Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe, Kathryn Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr., Jessica Henwick, Madelyn Cline, Kate Hudson, Dave Bautista
Director-Scriptwriter: Rian Johnson

Rated PG-13, 2 hours 19 minutes

It offers a small glimpse into the private life of famed detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) – although he doesn’t go as deep as Kenneth Branagh did with Poirot in his second Agatha Christie adaptation (which also greatly outdone his predecessor), it keeps the character enough of an enigma that one hopes it will be revealed slowly, across many movies. (After all, Craig just got rid of that other big recurring obligation…) The surprises may be more common than the biggies in Blades offbut they’re integral to the fun – and since it’s not possible to acknowledge some of the film’s strongest elements without spoiling them (this review won’t spoil anything), it’s best to say ignore any buzz and just go to the thing .

Perhaps the most negative thing you can say about Onion is that viewers who love the ornate old mansions and retro-exotic environments in which such things are usually held may be disappointed. Here’s the action all on a billionaire’s private island in Greece, an island dominated by pompous vanity architecture filled with hyper-expensive but tacky and awkward-looking objects (and some good art, certainly chosen by someone other than the billionaire).

Edward Norton plays Miles Bron, a headline-torn tech prince who gets credit for many more inventions than he should. Every year he invites his little clique of pre-success buddies for a weekend of fun. This time, he has planned a fake murder mystery, in which one of the guests is said to have killed him.

Why invite the most famous detective in the world to such an event? Isn’t that like taking Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to your basketball game? How should dummies like Kate Hudson’s former supermodel Birdie (now a lifestyle entrepreneur whose business is funded by Bron) compete? Or dummies like Dave Bautista’s Duke Cody, a men’s rights YouTuber so attached to his gun that he goes swimming with it strapped to his Speedo?

Okay, those two aren’t going to win this life-size game of Clue. Connecticut’s governor Claire Debella (Kathryn Hahn) and Birdie’s assistant Peg (Jessica Henwick, who again stands out in a small role) are smarter, and Duke’s girlfriend Whiskey (Madelyn Cline) is the kind of wildcard that could be really sharp under a Instagram hottie facade.

But none of these people are sharper than Lionel Toussaint (Leslie Odom Jr.), the scientist responsible for turning Bron’s cryptic three-word “brainstorms” into products, or Cassandra Brand (Janelle Monáe), Bron’s former business partner who was murdered not so long ago. Bron is surprised that she accepted his invitation; but he seems more surprised that Blanc even knew about this escape. Someone other than Bron sent Blanc’s invitation. As in kniveswe’ll guess for a while about that person’s identity.

Not being able to cover much of the plot, we can get to know the dramatis personae here more than we otherwise could. Almost all of them depend on Bronze money in one way or another, but he pretends they are still good friends. Would it surprise anyone if any of these “shitheads” (the word of the movie, though you’d agree) felt like Bron was actually going to kill?

With that potential simmering in the background, Johnson scratches the fresh rind over Brand’s betrayal. All these people used to be her best friends, but they all lied about her in court when Bron wanted to get rid of her. What is her angle? Is she here to make them all feel guilty, or just to show them how rich people should dress? (Costume designer Jenny Eagan creates several memorable looks, none more so than Blanc’s seersucker badger.)

To understand her motives, you have to jump back in time a bit, which Johnson does without losing any momentum. If anything, once he’s back in the present, he’s on a roll – and while Blanc seems to have largely conceived this whole scenario before cocktail hour ended, he’s also aware of his limitations. He’s a detective, he’s got to remind people, not Batman: discovering the truth of a crime doesn’t mean someone will pay for what they’ve done.

That’s a big way the Blanc films differ from most of the room whodunits that inspired them: characters who might write others off turn out to be crucial to the solutions Blanc helps bring about. He doesn’t use the ‘arc of truth’ metaphor that served him well in the first film, but it seems even more appropriate here, as he helps to set things in motion and then see them work as they should. . It’s very satisfying even before you begin to appreciate how it undermines conventions about authority figures. Even in a private shelter where the police are hard to reach, justice can sometimes be done. In the movies anyway.

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