Here's another clue for you all - GLASS ONION: A KNIVES OUT MYSTERY -- dir. Rian Johnson; Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Kate Hudson, Dave Bautista, Janelle Monáe, etc etc

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joe bang > benoit blanc

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:23 (one year ago) link

the character of “benoit blanc” is just kind of a gussied up nothing.

isn't that the joke

papal hotwife (milo z), Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:23 (one year ago) link

i was thinking that as i wrote it but if so to what end

Tracer Hand, Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:26 (one year ago) link

The idea of the World's Greatest Detective is absurd, if you're going to have the WGD, Inspector Poirot in a crowd of contemporary American dirtbags, it would be strange if he wasn't as absurd as the concept.

papal hotwife (milo z), Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:33 (one year ago) link

This one was fine and the first one wasn't very good but they'd be completely unwatchable if the detective was played straight or given any kind of weight.

papal hotwife (milo z), Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:35 (one year ago) link

done better before, though

https://prod-images.tcm.com/Master-Profile-Images/murderbydeath1976.4720.jpg

papal hotwife (milo z), Saturday, 7 January 2023 01:36 (one year ago) link

Murder by death an extremely racist movie

Its big ball chunky time (Jimmy The Mod Awaits The Return Of His Beloved), Saturday, 7 January 2023 07:11 (one year ago) link

Also not funny when it's not being racist, just a parade of jokes dropping to the floor with a clang.

Andrew Farrell, Saturday, 7 January 2023 09:40 (one year ago) link

it’s fine for the character to be a gussied up nothing, a cipher or stand-in, but craig fills in the “blanc space” with a kind of…constipated modesty? which i guess he thinks is charming or interesting but is neither by my lights.

Tracer Hand, Saturday, 7 January 2023 09:58 (one year ago) link

Yeah as funny and racist as a drunk old uncle at a family dinner. Love Maggie Smith in it though

AlXTC from Paris, Saturday, 7 January 2023 09:59 (one year ago) link

xpost obviously

AlXTC from Paris, Saturday, 7 January 2023 10:00 (one year ago) link

“What is reality?!?” was really funny

Tracer Hand, Saturday, 7 January 2023 21:24 (one year ago) link

Five minutes in, and this is already fairly insane.

The Triumphant Return of Bernard & Stubbs (Raymond Cummings), Saturday, 7 January 2023 23:26 (one year ago) link

This was fun, but yeah, I probably prefer the first one.

The Triumphant Return of Bernard & Stubbs (Raymond Cummings), Sunday, 8 January 2023 01:47 (one year ago) link

I think I'm like them both about the same, for slightly different reasons.

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Sunday, 8 January 2023 01:55 (one year ago) link

I appreciated how Miles’ friend “who was going through some things” was never revealed as some central part of this story. He was just a non-detail.

The Triumphant Return of Bernard & Stubbs (Raymond Cummings), Sunday, 8 January 2023 13:35 (one year ago) link

He was fun in "Moonlight Kingdom." In some ways he's the most insufferable when he's doing Serious Acting, and the most enjoyable when he's doing silly character stuff (like this or Wes Anderson or iirc "Birdman").

― Josh in Chicago, Sunday, December 25, 2022 12:02 PM (two weeks ago) bookmarkflaglink

He was the best past of “Birdman” and he was barely in it

The Triumphant Return of Bernard & Stubbs (Raymond Cummings), Sunday, 8 January 2023 13:42 (one year ago) link

xp he was just a good hang!

sault bae (voodoo chili), Sunday, 8 January 2023 13:48 (one year ago) link

I kinda suspected he wouldn't be, I thought it would be a hacky move to make that guy somehow relevant. Peg was the one I expected to hear more from, felt like that character was mostly there to deceive clever viewers who were going "you know what, I bet you anything it's the assistant"

frogbs, Sunday, 8 January 2023 18:07 (one year ago) link

i think she was mostly there to land the jokes about how birdie is not allowed to use her phone.

it seemed obvious to me from how all the characters were introduced that this was going not going to be an intricate whodunit and while i enjoyed it, it's using the pretext of the blanc character to tell a story about some other stuff. what johnson does with the third one will be interesting.

call all destroyer, Monday, 9 January 2023 03:15 (one year ago) link

I sense that I share a response with others. I was entertained, but don't like the film as much as KNIVES OUT. The Greek island setting already indicated a kind of decadence; I prefer cold autumnal New England. The characters didn't really belong together or interact particularly well. I was puzzled by how the obvious mastermind character, Miles Bron, was also the master villain, till I remembered that the theme was 'it's obvious, not complex' - hence the 'transparent' glass motif, replacing the knives motif I suppose. Echo of LINE OF DUTY last series ending here when the concept was 'an underwhelming person was the criminal mastermind'.

I think Janelle Monae acted well in that she performed sister 1, sister 2, and sister 2 pretending to be sister 1, and also being unsteadily drunk. Technically that seems to me a good demanding performance.

I started off with the impression of some buffoonery on Blanc's part but it seems to have been an act. By the end he is entirely composed. I like the way he does turn out to be brilliant at solving puzzles, notably with the murder mystery game crossbow itself.

But it strikes me that this wasn't much of a detective story in the classical sense; very little that the viewer could do to assemble or follow clues. More of a display with a lot of jokes along the way. Ultimately the amount of artifice and excess make me somewhat cool on it, whereas the fresh first film impressed me so much.

the pinefox, Monday, 9 January 2023 09:50 (one year ago) link

I think Janelle Monae acted well in that she performed sister 1, sister 2, and sister 2 pretending to be sister 1, and also being unsteadily drunk. Technically that seems to me a good demanding performance.

Yes! I'm glad you said it - she was easily the standout for me

Tracer Hand, Monday, 9 January 2023 09:51 (one year ago) link

there was something delicious about the first movie and that its death first appeared to be an inexplicable self-murder - that the planned murder didn't work as intended, that the intended victim happened to be a whodunnit expert who immediately envisaged a much more complex plan of their own which did work, that they seemingly had no idea that anyone had tried to murder them and that what they thought was a pre-emptive killing of themselves was actually, in the end, self-murder. very difficult to match that, which may explain why a sequel based apparently upon superficial complexity.

where we have two remarkable and sympathetic characters in the first, in the second we have one. the murdered sister has obviously been wronged (and then murdered to boot) but do we see anything that really portrays her as a sympathetic person? then the deaths themselves are, in the end, boring rather than obvious.

conrad, Monday, 9 January 2023 11:00 (one year ago) link

I'm fully invested in Benoit Blanc as a character and as a performance. It's Cage-ian

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Monday, 9 January 2023 11:42 (one year ago) link

Cracking post from Conrad. 100%.

the pinefox, Monday, 9 January 2023 11:49 (one year ago) link

What would you consider a classical detective story movie, PF? I don't know that it's a medium that lends itself well to it - the projectors drags us onwards without much of a chance to revisit clues placed (and I think the film goes to some lengths to point out the clues dropped for the first muster, at least).

Andrew Farrell, Monday, 9 January 2023 17:50 (one year ago) link

I agree that the medium may militate against the genre in that way, a way that prose fiction precisely does not.

However, there have, I think, been a lot of films (and TV) of things like Poirot and Holmes where it was still somewhat possible for viewers to pick up clues and formulate theories.

Here I don't think it's the speed that prevents that, more the lack of clues or mystery.

the pinefox, Monday, 9 January 2023 20:11 (one year ago) link

I enjoy mysteries and have rarely if ever felt like trying to solve the mystery with the clues made visible to the audience was what I was there for. What I relish is the experience of being strung along, watching the author’s contraptions execute

G. D’Arcy Cheesewright (silby), Monday, 9 January 2023 20:18 (one year ago) link

the thing is even if you did notice the clues it's not like that would help you figure out much of the mystery. outside of the glass switch I suppose, though I wonder how many people actually caught that?

I did figure something was up with Monae's character since when she first appears in the movie she does clearly have a Southern accent, but yeah I wouldn't have landed on THAT

frogbs, Monday, 9 January 2023 20:25 (one year ago) link

i'm not a guy who can solve a mystery during the movie itself either, but i remember in the thread for the first movie somebody said they totally figured out the switched vials plot element, and i liked that somebody was able to figure out some of the big plot twists in real time there.

this was, like i said upthread, a movie on rails, which is fine, but not like the first at all.

, Monday, 9 January 2023 20:32 (one year ago) link

i liked the mystery and Craig was great in it, i think johnson at one point maybe suggested he was a character who was slightly adaptable to his surroundings depending on the case. so here i think his intent at the beginning was to be a caricature, masking his real reason for being there. he wasn't a guy unexpectedly invited to a billionaire's party, acting the fool a bit, but rather a guy who was there to actually solve a murder no one else (but Helen, and the murderer) knew had occurred. so when he's watching everyone at the beginning of the film it's kinda to gauge them based on Helen's presence, and knowing what he knows about Andi being dead. i did like it less than Knives Out, which is a pretty uh sharp story and has that really amazing central performance by ana de armas. but i like it plenty for what it is.

omar little, Monday, 9 January 2023 20:36 (one year ago) link

I think Knives Out is a cleverer puzzle. I think the misdirection in Glass Onion is outstanding, though, particularly when you watch it a second time and try to catch the movie cheating. I think there’s very much a statement there about how little of our environment we actually perceive or process and how much received wisdom we allow to fill in the blanks in order to fit what we’re seeing into our preconceived narrative.

castanuts (DJP), Monday, 9 January 2023 20:58 (one year ago) link

Ah, I should rewatch GO, which I watched first time last night. I like KO better on one watch because it did feel like a tighter story, more intense presentations of the players, who also were slightly more interesting than in GO, and more subject to viewer evals and consideration during the viewing process.

I thought the whole puzzlebox thing was annoying and over done, it started to just be like, oooh how's macgyver gonna do this one? the whole thing felt very made for tv to me, despite the opulence.

normal AI yankovic (Hunt3r), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 01:18 (one year ago) link

puzzlebox set up the hammer joke

Cinta Kaz is comin' to town (Sufjan Grafton), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 02:46 (one year ago) link

yep, a metaphor for the whole shebang as well

sleeve, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 03:08 (one year ago) link

I was bored by that sequence too (though the hammer bit did make me laugh a lot)...but yeah it's an essential part of Bron's character

frogbs, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 03:14 (one year ago) link

I think Knives Out is a cleverer puzzle. I think the misdirection in Glass Onion is outstanding, though, particularly when you watch it a second time and try to catch the movie cheating. I think there’s very much a statement there about how little of our environment we actually perceive or process and how much received wisdom we allow to fill in the blanks in order to fit what we’re seeing into our preconceived narrative.

― castanuts (DJP), Monday, January 9, 2023 3:58 PM (six hours ago) bookmarkflaglink

this is a good point! i was thinking about the in the context of how we initially don't see who is at blanc's door and how he actually got involved

call all destroyer, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 03:16 (one year ago) link

yeah one of the dangling threads is how did he get that box and I thought well stands to reason that there's only one person there who could reverse engineer it but it turns out it wasn't him lol

frogbs, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 03:19 (one year ago) link

there was something delicious about the first movie and that its death first appeared to be an inexplicable self-murder - that the planned murder didn't work as intended, that the intended victim happened to be a whodunnit expert who immediately envisaged a much more complex plan of their own which did work, that they seemingly had no idea that anyone had tried to murder them and that what they thought was a pre-emptive killing of themselves was actually, in the end, self-murder. very difficult to match that, which may explain why a sequel based apparently upon superficial complexity.

where we have two remarkable and sympathetic characters in the first, in the second we have one. the murdered sister has obviously been wronged (and then murdered to boot) but do we see anything that really portrays her as a sympathetic person? then the deaths themselves are, in the end, boring rather than obvious.

Yes to all of this. The extraordinary thing about Knives Out was that it presented a plot we'd never seen before while also staying true to the genre of country-house murder mystery, where you'd think all the existing plots had already been used. And the misdirection was the very best kind; the kind where the false plot seems real because to some of the characters it is real. We see the story first through the eyes of Ana de Armas's character, who really believes it happened this way, and so the gradually unfolding realization that she doesn't have all the information is both surprising and satisfying. And it fits with the characterization of her as a straightforward and decent person who doesn't know she's in a nest of vipers. Of course there's more going on than she sees. Of course we, who are in her head, wouldn't see it either. Of course it would take a Benoit Blanc, wise to the evils of mankind, to see what we're all missing.

I enjoyed GO, but it didn't have that quality of things locking together with an audible snap that Knives Out had. The twist in Glass Onion works, but that's all you can really say for it. It doesn't make you go "Ohhh, that makes sense!" It doesn't upend what we thought was happening. It's just more information about the story, withheld for no particular reason. GO also felt more depressing to me, in that it basically presents Bron as impossible to take down. I would have been okay with an ending in which Bron was somehow tricked into burning down his own mansion, but an ending in which the characters basically say "I give up, there's no winning against this complete idiot; he's too rich and powerful to bring down legally, so let's just commit arson and hope it embarrasses him," is a big old bummer. Knives Out had the satisfying quality of an episode of Columbo, where the rich and powerful are brought down by their own hubris and the detective's relentless common sense. Glass Onion basically says, "The law can't get these guys, so we have to go outside the law," which is a sort of negation of the whodunit genre, a swerve into noir, maybe, or the kind of thing you see at the very end of a series, where the writer and the detective are both exhausted, and the writer can only bring it to an end by blowing up the whole premise that the good guys can get the bad guys by figuring things out.

Lily Dale, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 16:45 (one year ago) link

I thought that was kind of the point of the ending, they had to find a way to ruin the mythology of Miles Bron. having his 'clean' fuel source torch his own mansion and ruin one of the most famous artworks of all time seems like it would probably do it. not to mention the murder of two people close to him. it's hard to imagine "Alpha" sticking around much longer after that.

I guess on reflection Knives Out was probably the better movie, but I think it's a legitimately great one which doesn't come around very often anymore. Glass Onion is also great but less so. It's maybe unfair to compare the two - they're both murder mysteries, but I think they both approach the concept in very different ways

frogbs, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 16:56 (one year ago) link

And to be fair, Johnson has explicitly said that he's taking a Christie approach where not every mystery/story/etc has to be the same or work the same or have the same tone etc. He wants to vary it up, and some things will work more than others depending on the viewer. I mean, I'm already very interested in whatever the third film will be regardless of what the hell approach/setting/etc he takes.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 17:03 (one year ago) link

Lily, agreed very much about the overall differences - great description of why KO worked so well.

I do think I enjoyed GO just a little more than you did; I guess for me the ending pyrotechnics still have the 'satisfying puzzle' feel, because we're seeing the two heroes smartly put together several different pieces of information to identify exactly how this scorched-earth solution could be achieved, and why it would work.

got it in the blood, the kid's a pelican (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 17:20 (one year ago) link

Extremely minor point but I appreciate that Benoit quoted the line "my God, it's full of stars" as being from 2010: The Year They Make Contact, not 2001 (I know it's in the book 2001, but more importantly it's not in the movie).

Chris L, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 18:11 (one year ago) link

I thought that was kind of the point of the ending, they had to find a way to ruin the mythology of Miles Bron. having his 'clean' fuel source torch his own mansion and ruin one of the most famous artworks of all time seems like it would probably do it. not to mention the murder of two people close to him. it's hard to imagine "Alpha" sticking around much longer after that.

― frogbs, Tuesday, January 10, 2023 11:56 AM (one hour ago) bookmarkflaglink

No billionaire has nor would ever face consequences for anything ever

Whiney G. Weingarten, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 18:36 (one year ago) link

ok

frogbs, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 18:39 (one year ago) link

Michael Milken was the equivalent of a billionaire in today's dollars

more difficult than I look (Aimless), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 18:46 (one year ago) link

man I thought about it a little and a high school chemistry teacher wouldn't be able to defeat a cartel, so now I don't like Breaking Bad anymore

fentanyl young (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 19:09 (one year ago) link

they literally have this conversation in the movie iirc

Tracer Hand, Tuesday, 10 January 2023 19:29 (one year ago) link

Extremely minor point but I appreciate that Benoit quoted the line "my God, it's full of stars" as being from 2010: The Year They Make Contact, not 2001 (I know it's in the book 2001, but more importantly it's not in the movie).


Yes! Also loved that.

bit high, bitch (gyac), Tuesday, 10 January 2023 19:34 (one year ago) link

even more extremely minor point, miles wasn't playing blackbird correctly, or at least not how mccartney plays it. maybe accidental, but the camera did linger on the fretting hand right at the pertinent moment.

ledge, Wednesday, 11 January 2023 09:00 (one year ago) link


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