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Knives Out 4K UHD Review

Knives

“Knives Out” is Rian Johnson’s best film.

Amidst a family birthday celebration for famed author Harlan Thrombey, Harlan winds up dead in what looks to be a suicide. As the police and a private detective named Benoit Blanc investigate the death, Harlan’s will reveals that his belongings go to his nurse Marta which causes the entire Thrombey family to blow up in outrage. What really happened to Harlan and can the case be solved?

As someone who is not overly fond of film or TV murder mysteries as they tend to get stuck in formulas and long-winded climactic explanations, “Knives Out” was a breath of fresh air in the genre. As writer/director Rian Johnson is want to do, he plays with genre conventions and expectations once again here and the results are delightful. On top of creating a murder mystery that definitely doesn’t go where you’d think, he explores themes of race and class, and even slides in what is essentially a thriller storyline involving a blackmail. It all mixes so well together and you (the viewer) are left glued to your screen to see how it all comes together.

Aside from Rian Johnson’s skilled direction and his Academy Award nominated screenplay, the epic ensemble cast only makes this cinematic treasure even more compelling. Daniel Craig sporting a southern accent may sound strange, but he pulls it off. Craig is clearly having a blast here as he gets to expand his acting range while also creating a character that (as we know now) is set to be a part of a new franchise. Rising star Ana de Armas is the perfect choice for Marta (who is essentially the main character here). Even with such a young career, she has already taken on so many unique parts. Chris Evans may forever be known as Captain America, but the actor shows that he is not one to be typecast as he plays the smug playboy Hugh. The rest of the cast is stacked with talent like Michael Shannon, Jamie Lee Curtis, Don Johnson, Katherine Langford, Toni Collette, Christopher Plummer, Lakeith Stanfield, Noah Segan and so on. They’re all wonderful in their roles, but if I had one criticism, it’s that a majority of the family members could have had more characterization. They all have their moments and purpose, but maybe not as much screentime as you’d think. Since this is an ensemble piece and they weren’t the primary focus though, I can let it slide.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.85:1 2160p. How does it look? Honestly, it’s not much of an upgrade over the Blu-ray.

Audio Track: Dolby Atmos. How does it sound? The Atmos seems like overkill given that this isn’t an audio intensive movie, but it does the job obviously.
Extras:
* Digital copy
* Blu-ray copy
* 2 deleted scenes with optional commentary by Rian Johnson.
* Teaser, theatrical and final trailers for “Knives Out,” 3 Meet The Thrombey’s viral ads and a Rian Johnson promo titled “Ode To The Murder Mystery”
* A 42 minute Director and Cast Q&A from November 2019 in California
* “Rian Johnson: Planning The Perfect Murder”- Rian Johnson talks about creating the story.
* “Making A Murder”- 8 featurettes on the cast, the script, costumes, production design, cinematography, editing, music and sound and the film’s production and marketing.
* A solo in-theater commentary with Rian Johnson who provides a lot of behind-the-scenes details.
* Commentary by Rian Johnson, Steve Yedlin and Noah Segan. An extension of the prior commentary but with more perspectives.

March 14, 2020 - Posted by | 4K UHD Review | , , , , , ,

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