Layered Transparency: Glass Onion Review

Audrey Poynter, Reporter

It has an invitation to an island, a murder mystery gone awry, and a plot for revenge, yet, the detective is still the most entertaining part of this all-star film.

Directed by Rian Johnson, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery is a continuation, yet not a sequel, to Knives Out (2019). Knives Out received praise for its witty and complex storyline, and I was excited by its cast and classic whodunit framework. Glass Onion had large shoes to fill. Popular films that inspire sequels often bring terror to the films’ fans; sequels are notorious for being worse than the original. They are usually sloppy reproductions, made without passion to be a cash grab. Glass Onion broke the mold.

The film revolves around a group of people who call themselves friends to eccentric billionaire Miles Bron. However, each of them reaps the benefits of Bron’s money. The odd one out, Cassandra Brand, Miles’ former partner, was “Social Network-ed” by him and his groupies. When Miles invites them all to his private Greek island, they learn that they will spend the weekend solving his fake murder.

As a lover of Clue, both the board game and the film, murder mysteries are a particular favorite of mine. Each character has a particular archetype that I can put into a box and use to decode the truth. Usually I can guess the killer, but this one stumped me. The characters of Glass Onion are vibrant and individual; yet the friends of Bron are all still weak people.

Glass Onion captured my fancy with its heavy symbolism and its cultural relevance. A main point is blatant criticism of the obscenely wealthy. Most everyone assumes that because of Miles’ influence and wealth, he must be some sort of genius. This reflects modern issues with the billionaires of the world – particularly Elon Musk with his Twitter fiasco.

I hope that the Knives Out series will continue its season-themed settings; first was autumn, Glass Onion was summer, and the next I hope to follow with spring or winter. If I were a professional film critic, I may be harsher on the script. It is a fun movie and it does not take itself too seriously. It is a rare gem.

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