Glass Onion repeats the success of Knives Out and closes 2022 on a high note

As a super fan of Agatha Christie (and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), I follow the attempts to find alternatives to the legendary Hercule Poirot and Sherlock Holmes. And that’s what the Knives Out franchise has tried with Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig), the precise and curious detective who was successful with the 2019 feature and has now returned to Netflix, in 2022. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery is just the first of two feature films that have been commissioned featuring the character.

Created by Rian Johnson, Benoit is the vain private detective completely inspired by Poirot and ironically played by Daniel Craig, ex-James Bond. It couldn’t be more opposite to 007 than that. The director had the idea for the concept openly inspired by the Agatha Christie formula many years before working on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, but decided to bet on the project shortly thereafter. It all started, as he said at the time of the first feature, with his passion for puzzles and crosswords, which help him stay focused, as he claims. Of course, he wanted to modernize the genre and avoid “a conventional murder mystery”, so he took great care with the twists and veiled political criticism. You got it. With a star-studded cast, Knives Out grossed over $300 million and swept the critics as well. What’s more, in March 2021 Netflix paid an estimated $469 million for the rights to two independent sequels, written and directed by Rian, and Glass Onion is the first of them.

The film is obviously light and invites us to unleash our imagination, considering the most impossible possibilities to accompany Benoit in solving “perfect crimes”. What I think is missing, and I’m alone in my impression, is having a cast with the comic timing that the text asks for, starting with the star of the franchise, Daniel Craig. His thick southern accent (every British actor loves to play his American hillbilly role) is too distracting and he fails to make us laugh. At least not me. With the same challenge is Edward Norton who shines in intense roles, but not so much in comedies. I say that I am alone in the face of the enormous success that the feature has had, approved by critics and the public and the praise precisely to whom I found it worse. Okay! Here’s my warning.

This time, Benoit Blanc – who was bored and looking for a new challenge – joins a fun group of friends, led by billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton), who will spend a weekend trying to discover “who killed him”. Of course, the crime ends up being another and the presence of the detective disrupts the lives of those who really want to take advantage of the chance to commit a crime.

I won’t give spoilers because it spoils. For Poirot fans, it will be easy to see that the plot has touches of Evil Under the Sun and The Last of Sheila. I think The AfterParty was more efficient and creative in its storytelling, but the Knives Out franchise is here to stay. The next film is estimated for 2024. Who will be in the cast?

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