Glass Onion: A knives out mystery
Updated: Dec 2, 2022
Director: Rian Johnson
A whip-smart murder mystery and fabulous new role for Daniel Craig, who is no longer strutting his stuff in a slightly too small tuxedo as James Bond, and who is now donning beige linens, a boyfriend, aquired a Southern drawl and manifesting the world renowned detective, Benoit Blanc.
What unfolds in ‘Glass Onion’ is a murder mystery set on a Greek Island that is worthy of Agatha Christie.
Although the world is in the crippling first stages of pandemic, the infantile tech billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton) invites his closest friends; a collection of (infantile) influencers, (infantile) disrupters, (infantile) politicians and every other worst example of these new and not so new species – to fawn over him and enjoy his lavish hospitality. To flesh out these appalling individuals is a cast that is as much fun as the characters they portray, including Kathryn Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr., Jessica Henwick, Madelyn Cline, Kate Hudson, Dave Bautista and Janelle Monáe.
It is immediately apparent to viewers that Bron is a tosser who basically owns this group of ‘besties’ as he has bought their allegiance many times over. Nothing, not even a little pandemic, is going to stop him holding his annual gathering so he can ensure they are all completely aware of how much more he has to give and enjoy having them vie to suck on his ‘*golden titties’ (*a term from the film’s script, and not one I would usually use:)
As in all good whodunnits, everyone has a motive and the film script is firmly tongue-in-cheek.
What really appealed to my sense of fun and fancy was the film’s set design. I love the fact that 'The Glass Onion' has thought of every gizmo and conspicuous icon of ridiculous wealth you can imagine. Our narcissistic billionaire owns the best damn art collection money can buy and you’ll find yourself playing spot the Van Gogh, de Kooning, Warhol, Hirst, Koons, Picasso, Matisse … and, was that a Guan Wei? The cherry of the collection is the ‘on loan’ ‘Mona Lisa‘. Brom has obviously negotiated a little deal to give the Louvre some extra cash until the pandemic subsides.
And ... just who is the photorealist artist who painted the massive canvas of Serena Williams? But wait, suddenly the canvas moves and Serena demands in the middle of the murder mayhem - "Are we working out today? You know I charge by the hour..." Now that is real bang for your buck.
‘The Glass Onion’ is surprisingly fresh for a movie intent on sending up every whodunnit trope (and tech billionaire) known to the viewer.
I did review Johnson's original 'Knives Out' movie in 2019 and equally enjoyed it. More here.