If you recall back in September when Knives Out premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, the media universally fell in love with the film, many calling it the best of 2019. The one takeaway of their admiration for the film was the way it attacked Trump supporters. The film does not attempt to hide it’s disdain for “MAGA People” from the actors, to the director, to the script. For that reason, critics gushed about shots taken at their political enemies, many calling it a fun ‘fuck you’ to rich white Trump voters.
So knowing the film is going to run down anyone who doesn’t share the politics of Chris Evans and Michael Shannon, the only real question here is the story well enough to ignore the politics and honestly, not really. An old multi-millionaire dies under the questionable circumstances and the family is suspected of foul play. A private investigator looks into a “whodunit” with the help of the Hispanic caretaker who has a unique ability of not being able to lie. The duo investigates the family to see which greedy member has what it takes to kill for a whole lot of money.
Knives Out is presented as a murder mystery but if you already know how Rian Johnson operates, you know to keep your expectations low because they must be subverted. The film is ultimately two hours of misdirection squeezed in between Johnson taking shots at Donald Trump’s family. Johnson takes aim at families who inherit money as greedy people who care more about their inheritance than their love ones and apparently think all South American countries are the same. So yes, there is quite of bit of left-wing projection involved here.
The film doesn’t develop many characters because their screentime is spent depicting them as deplorable which is very odd because the patriarch of the family played by Christopher Plummer is depicted as a genuinely good person but all of his kids and grandkids are depicted as racist assholes which is not how racism works. The only person who is given any real character is Ana de Armas playing the only non-white character in the equation so you already she is bulletproof. Daniel Craig plays a detective with a southern accent that hasn’t been dated since Boston Red Stockings but he is far from the most unbelievable thing about the film.
There really isn’t much to dissect with Knives Out, if you have an American Flag on your pickup truck, this film isn’t made for you (and probably hates your guts). If you want to take out your frustrations on that dude with the MAGA hat, you have probably already given this film five stars. I don’t believe there will be many people in between. If so, you are probably better off enjoying this film at home while not thinking too much about the plot.