Knives Out

Knives Out ★★★★½

Expertly engineered puzzle box whodunnit fun amongst a massive ensemble of choice actors (and boldly, a relatively unproven one in the lead, who earns her slingshot to stardom), with a cunning, acidic socio-political backwash. The determination to twist against expectation reminded me of Johnson's con artist tomfoolery in "The Brothers Bloom", but he's in far surer control of the script now. As a hilariously clever act of pure comedy, this also reveals a new side to the filmmaker's talent. I wish he'd continue his streak of poppin' genre originals and one-off franchise refreshments, instead of hitching his wagon to a new long-term "Star Wars" narrative, because he's kind of riding parallel to the style of career Christopher Nolan is having so far, and it's awesome. But yeah yeah, "Star Wars" could use an imaginative and enthusiastic mind like his as it prepares to re-invent itself a bit. Anyway where was I, oh yeah everyone's already said all the delightful things about "Knives Out" here on Letterboxd and elsewhere, so the defense rests.

Rian Johnson ranking to date:
1) Brick (A)
2) Knives Out (A-)
3) The Last Jedi (B+)
4) The Brothers Bloom (B) (might well deserve better if/when I re-watch it, but only seen it once)
5) Looper (B) (same)

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