Review: ‘Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery’ is full of layers


Photo credit: Netflix Promotional Images

This promotional image features characters Claire Debella, Whiskey, Miles Bron, Lionel Toussaint and Birdie Jay, who are all witnesses to a shocking revelation. “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” is comical murder-mystery featuring an ensemble cast of eccentric characters. This film premiered on Netflix Dec. 23 and is available for streaming.

By Cadence Callahan, Voices Editor

Murder, mystery and Benoit Blanc? Sign me up! This past holiday season, famed fictional detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) graced our screens for the first time in three years in “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” the latest addition to the “Knives Out” franchise.

Netflix released “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” Dec. 23, and the film received a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. This film serves as the expansion of the “Benoit Blanc Universe,” as it isn’t a sequel to its predecessor, but focuses on the lovable, ingenious Southern detective we meet in the first movie.

The film follows a group of longtime friends — washed-up model Birdie Jay (Kate Hudson), politician Claire Debella (Kathryn Hahn), scientist Lionel Toussaint (Leslie Odom Jr.), “mens rights” influencer Duke Cody (Dave Bautista) and tech mogul “Andi Brand” (Janelle Monáe) — all of whom have experienced immense successes due to their relationship with Miles Bron (Edward Norton), famed tech-giant with an “Elonesque” persona.

During an annual reunion and, coincidentally, a murder-mystery party, Benoit Blanc is invited by a seemingly anonymous source to solve Miles Bron’s “murder.” However, this film leads viewers down a baffling spiral with Blanc, Bron and Brand’s characters at the center.

As mentioned before, this latest film is centered around Benoit Blanc’s character — something that differs from the format of the original “Knives Out” movie, which focused on the Thrombey family with Blanc in the background. With a runtime of 2 hours and 19 minutes, viewers are stuck with Blanc and his thick, sometimes comical, Southern accent for the duration of the film.

The film is set in the early days of the pandemic and nationwide shutdowns, and it was enjoyable to see just how accurate the creators got it. Our first introduction to various characters and their responses to the pandemic allows us to understand their personalities in a matter of seconds. From Birdie Jay throwing a gigantic house party to Duke Cody not wearing a mask during the group’s initial encounter, we are better able to understand these interesting characters on our screen in a less than obvious way.

The use of internet terms and pop culture references like “Among Us” and “cancelled” is something that modernizes the film, but may age it in the long run. However, I found Birdie Jay’s use of Twitter and her assistant Peg’s (Jessica Henwick) pleas for the fashionista to stop tweeting ignorant remarks laughable.

The acting in this film was something I thoroughly enjoyed as well. While the first “Knives Out” movie was more of a serious drama, with moments of humor sprinkled throughout, “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” leans into the foolishness and stupidity of the characters. And while watching the movie, I found myself laughing at almost every interaction between the cast.

Another incredible performance comes from Janelle Monáe, who delivers a brilliant, and honestly sort of unexpected, execution as she assumes more than one accent…and role. Is she the protagonist? Is she the antagonist? Why does she look so good with an asymmetrical haircut? These are all questions I had throughout the film, and some I’m sure viewers will have as well.

Overall, this film was enjoyable from start to finish, and just when you’ve thought that you’ve pulled back the layers and understand the mystery or who the true antagonist is, there’s a new revelation that makes you rethink everything.

  • Story
  • Acting
  • Technical Quality
  • Enjoyment
  • Impact


“Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” is the continuation film and expansion of the “Benoit Blanc universe,” the detective from the original “Knives Out.” The film was released on Netflix Dec. 23, and follows Blanc as he solves yet another mystery — now on the secluded island of tech-giant Miles Bron. The film features an ensemble cast of ludicrous, immature characters who have shady pasts. From start to finish, “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” is hilarious, enjoyable and allows viewers to feel like private eyes throughout its 2 hours and 19 minutes runtime.