Movie Review: Glass Onion (2022)

Once again written and directed by Rian Johnson, Glass Onion (alternatively, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery) is a standalone sequel to Johnson’s previous film, Knives Out (2019) and was released in December 2022. When billionaire tech mogul Miles Bron (Edward Norton) invites his influential group of friends to his Greek island for a murder mystery weekend, all of the self-named Disruptors arrive: Governor Claire Debella (Kathryn Hahn); Twitch streamer Duke Cody (Dave Bautista) and his younger girlfriend, Whiskey (Madelyn Cline); former supermodel Birdie Jay (Kate Hudson) and her assistant, Peg (Jessica Henwick); Bron’s leading company scientist Lionel Toussaint (Leslie Odom Jr.), and; Bron’s former business partner Cassandra Brand (Janelle Monáe), who is coming off a lengthy court case against Bron. Unbeknownst to the Disruptors, Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) has also received an invite, where it seems there is more than just a weekend of partying and reminiscing afoot.

+ the ensemble cast is simply fantastic, arguably more real-life famous and more in-film engrossing than the previous movie. Norton is a long time favourite of mine, and I can’t really think of a better actor to play the mysterious, slightly douchebag-gy tech mogul than him. Daniel Craig is great, though I admit I was once again thrown by his accent. I’m a big fan of Bautista’s acting roles, and he plays the muscle-head jock here as well as you might expect of a former pro wrestler. Overall, each of the main cast were great in their own ways
+ central story of the murder mystery on the island is lots of fun and eventually makes sense, but see below for a negative on that. The twists and turns common to mystery fiction are on display, and there are enough clues for eagle-eyed viewers to piece some things together before they are officially revealed
+ the movie is set in 2020, right as COVID was destroying our social lives across the world. It was interesting to see it portrayed in a big budget movie, but I admit I don’t quite see the point of it when it’s clear that the actors won’t be wearing face masks and standing away from each other for the whole movie

– the film broke more than one of the Ten Commandments of Detective Fiction (though of course I won’t say which in this review), which really left a bad taste in my mouth. It is not “fair” that the detective character has more information than me, the viewer, if we are both trying to solve the same mystery. Some slight re-editing to place certain reveals in different places in the movie might have solved some of my issues, and not broken these rules of detective fiction in the first place

> I enjoyed random cameos from the likes of Ethan Hawke, Hugh Grant and Angela Lansbury, among others.

Should you see this film: Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this for what it was trying to be. I had some issue with the placing/timeline of reveals, but they don’t stop me from recommending this. The cast is great, the central story is compelling, and the resolution is earned, if not perfect. This was a fun way to spend a night.


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