Knives Out establishes its uniqueness in the murder mystery genre

With only a $40 million dollar budget, Director Rian Johnson managed to create a unique cinematic experience. “Knives Out,” the newest murder mystery movie that is running rampant across the U.S. is a great mix of the movie “Clue” and Agatha Christie books. “Knives Out” is a surprisingly edgy comedy, which includes political commentary and social critiques. 

The movie is set in Massachusetts, in a stereotypical mysterious Mansion, that includes trap doors, fake entrances and dusty cluttered items. While the movie starts out slow, it quickly picks up speed with multiple twists and surprises. If you aren’t willing to wait till the very end for the entire plot to reveal itself, I wouldn’t recommend watching this movie. The movie as a whole is very patient with the plot, not revealing too much in the early stages, while including enough information to make it interesting.

Although the acting was overall above average, not everyone on the cast performed as well as I thought they would. The acting in “Knives Out” had some disappointing performances, as well as some phenomenal ones. The biggest let down from an actor was Daniel Craig, who played Detective Benoit Blanc. Being the main “comedian”…. if you could even call Craig that, was a very poor choice in retrospect. A lot of the comic relief that came from Craig was overplayed and repetitive. Craig’s southern accent was unsettling and dorky, and felt very forced. His jokes didn’t really land and they hurt the movie as a whole.

 There were some bright spots however, as Ana de Armas played her part as Marta Cabrera flawlessly, providing the audience with a protagonist that was easy to connect with and producing a very lovable character. Surprisingly, Armas declined the role of Marta at first, however thankfully she agreed to a large part in the movie and Armas’ strong acting brought the movie to another level. 

Edi Patterson as Fran wasn’t anything to write home about, as her performance left much to be desired. In the first half of the movie, her character was pretty bland, however as the movie progressed she seemed to become more comfortable with the character.

Chris Evans played his part very well, and seeing him in a more serious role was refreshing as he fits in well in the grand scheme of things. One thing that he did very well was creating a new character for Chris Evans entirely, almost making you forget that he is of course… Captain America. Often times when actors are coming off a big role, you can only see them as their previous character as that’s who they are still best known as. Tom Cruise rarely steps out of the action movie, Hugh Jackman is still best known as Wolverine, and Daniel Radcliffe had a hard time being anything other than Harry Potter. Yet, in “Knives Out,” Evans owned a completely new character, and broke away from the stigma that he can only play Captain America. 

Overall, I would rate the acting an 8 out of 10, with the performances differing in quality. I am pretty happy with how the acting turned out, specifically Evans and Armas who helped the plot move forward. However, Craig and Patterson had some lackluster moments.

Over the years murder mystery movies have become increasingly cliche and predictable. However, if you hate cliche endings, then “Knives Out” is the perfect movie for you. Unlike most murder mysteries, the ending was not only unexpected, but also a satisfying way to end a great movie. The build up to the ending was very slow and reeled back to previous murder mystery movies, but pays off considering how well the movie finished.  

If I had to compare it to another movie I would compare it to the “Usual Suspects,” as you have the ability to try to solve the mystery yourself. However the movie walks you through it if you just want to sit along for the ride. The plot twists were  not over the top, but they were still very interesting and unexpected. Every plot twist was within reason, but equally shocking. 

I believe “Knives Out” is the most fascinating murder mystery to come out in the past decade, balancing its humorous and serious acting to create an outstanding movie that will shock viewers and have them leaving the theatre with a smile on their face. My rating for the movie is a 9 out of 10, as the well written plot creates an extraordinary cinematic experience that will rock any audience member’s world.