Film Review: Knives Out

Updated: Jun 13, 2021

By Chloe Olivia Sladden

In recent years, the cinematic ‘murder mystery has a huge comeback, especially if the success of the latest adaption of ‘Murder on The Orient Express’ or Netflix’s ‘Murder Mystery’ comedy are anything to go by.

Knives Out is a modern murder mystery, which has delighted critics with its unique take on the ‘locked room’ murder mystery, where everyone has motive, and everyone is a suspect. The mystery soon becomes a thriller, that keeps you watching, as every lucky break in the mystery is followed by an unexpected twist, throwing the viewer off the scent at every turn.

It all begins with the murder of the family Patriarch and renowned crime novelist, Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer), on the night of his 85th birthday party, when the whole family gathered to celebrate. Harlan is found the next morning in his study, by his housekeeper Fran (Edi Patterson), with a slit throat. The murder is deemed to be a suicide by the police when private detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is mysteriously hired to take on the case and investigate all the suspects including Harlan’s two children, three children-in-law, and three grandchildren.


Blanc soon discovers that Harlan’s nurse Marta (Ana de Armas) was the last one to see him alive and has a rare affliction, she throws up when she lies, which makes it harder for Marta to keep her secrets. The detective enlists Martha to help him find the true murder, but as he closes in on the case, and as the family turn against Martha, Harlan’s granddaughter Megan (Katherine Langford) and his grandson Hugh Ransom (Chris Evans) each appear to offer their support to Martha, but with a murder case to solve, who can she really trust?

The viewer is kept guessing until the final confrontation, as the murder is led back to the scene of the crime. The film’s director Rian Johnson manages to execute an original murder mystery, with  each character making their mark on the film, even with a large ensemble cast, Johnson proves that there is more to the mystery genre, than finding out who did it.

Knives out delves into what everyone loves about a good murder mystery, the suspense, the thrills and the twist, that leads you to the heart stopping conclusion, where all the pieces in the mystery are finally revealed and put into place.

The exploration of morals and dark comedy in the film, only add to an intelligent Agatha Christie-esque script and edge of your seat moments. Knives Out is an incredibly thrilling film, that will reel you in and keep you hooked to the very end.

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