Daniel Cruse’s review published on Letterboxd:
Leave it to Rian Johnson to subvert expectations in interesting, ambitious, and thoroughly entertaining ways again and again. I’ve yet to watch one of his films and not at least come away feeling I saw something fresh and unique, this continued ability to break new ground caught him a lot of heat when he took his Star Wars film into territory that left many fans unsatisfied and angry. I was not among those fans, I loved that movie as I’ve loved most Star Wars films and because of that and the rest of his filmography, I was over the moon excited for this movie. I love murder mysteries and I love the cast, those two elements are all I needed to know this would be up my alley.
When I say this film delivered on those two elements and so much more, I really mean it. It kept me on my toes, the story unfolds in thrilling and unpredictable ways while never becoming too convoluted. It’s also written with razor sharp precision which is no surprise given Johnson’s work on a movie like Brick. Knives Out balances so much and manages to keep everything in the air. It’s an incredibly funny movie too.
The cast is really firing on all cylinders. Christopher Plummer and Jamie Lee Curtis among others deliver exactly what you’d hope/expect but Daniel Craig chews the scenery in such a delightfully charming way with his southern drawl and unusual mannerisms. I’ve never seen him act in this way before and it was really entertaining to watch. Lakeith Stanfield is great as well, continuing his amazing streak from Atlanta to Get Out and Sorry To Bother You. I look forward to seeing his role in Uncut Gems. Ana De Armas really impressed me with a role that was far more substantial than I would’ve guessed going into the movie, she did great amongst all of this talent and proved herself a worthy performer in my eyes. I have liked her since seeing her role in 2049 but it was great to see her with more to do in this film as her character in that one is complex but often a passive observer as opposed to an active participant in the story. The story sort of revolves around her in a really interesting way.
I want to stay away from any further plot details cause it’s best to know as little and possible about this one but definitely check it out in theaters if it looks like it might be your thing. I loved everything about this one. It unfolds in such a satisfying manner that I left the theater wanting to see it again very soon.