Rian Johnson’s 2019 detective comedy Knives Out brought new life into a subgenre many thought you could stick a fork in, with a character to really root for and plenty of reversals and reveals that took one by surprise amid a backdrop chockablock with pop culture references and cultural commentary. You’d expect to find similar urgency in his sequel, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, set in the early months of the pandemic shutdown.
I don’t want to give away too much, but you might want to expect less.
In Glass Onion, Daniel Craig’s Benoit Blanc finds himself at the very socially distant estate of mogul Miles Bron (Edward Norton), along with his erstwhile friends Duke (Dave Bautista), an influencer; Claire (Kathryn Hahn), the governor of Connecticut; Birdie (Kate Hudson), a shallow entrepreneur, of sorts; Lionel (Leslie Odom, Jr.), a scientist; and Cassandra Brand (Janelle Monáe), a turncoat by virtue of being the only one with scruples.
Unfortunately, there’s not much to this mystery and few surprises that you can’t chart along the way. If this is Johnson’s attempt to be our modern Agatha Christie and reflect who and how we are as a society, well, perhaps the mirror crack’d.