“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.”
This quote by Socrates speaks to the avaricious heirs of deceased billionaire “Harlan Thrombey” (marvelous, aplomb depiction by Christopher Plummer); mystery writer of shared legacy with Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle, Dashiell Hammett; a questionable suicide demands the attention of local law enforcement and an enigmatic, renown detective, “Benoit Blanc” (Daniel Craig, worth the admission price); children and grandchildren reek of superficiality, cloaked sycophancy, bloated greed, in competition for the least obnoxious, obsequious inheritor. Writer/director Rian Johnson creates enough culprits to keep viewers in suspenseful limbo, a superb cast including: Jamie Lee Curtis, “Linda”, and feckless husband, “Morris” (seasoned Don Johnson) seethe with pretentious righteousness; Michael Shannon and Toni Collette give apt characterizations of meager minions; Chris Evans as sluggard, ne’er-do-well grandson, “Ransom” confirming that he is more substantive than “Captain America”. Ana de Armas as Harlan’s loyal, empathetic nurse/caregiver, “Marta” (afflicted with a regurgitative reaction to lying) adds interest and depth to a labyrinthine of intrigue; Marta and Benoit are the sharpest “knives” in the mansion.
“Knives Out” , not exactly exhilarating, but does entertain; witticisms abound, politics, minimally titillating; resonating underneath the hollering, haranguing antics, lurks the poised question of inherited wealth; does expectation stunt innovation? Or “money isn’t everything, but it sure keeps the kids close”; a toxic proximity worth a fortune for emancipation.
THREE & 1/2 STARS!!!