In his first major motion picture since annoying and disappointing generations of Star Wars fans with The Last Jedi, writer-director-progressive Rian Johnson is poised to do the same to an even larger slice of the American public with next month’s Knives Out. And lefty movie critics couldn’t be more thrilled, according to the latest from Society Reviews.
SR reports that “critics at the Toronto International Film Festival [are] gushing about the film’s shared hatred for Trump and his voters,” which is about as subtle as a knife to the throat.
KNIVES OUT is a fun ‘fuck you’ to rich white Trump voters, wrapped in a crafty Agatha Christie package. VERY pro immigration. And none of this is subtle. Enjoy it in a crowd. #TIFF19
— Tomris Laffly (@TomiLaffly) September 8, 2019
Never mind that Trump was put into office by working-class voters in the Rust Belt, who switched allegiance from Obama to Trump following eight years of Democratic neglect. Hollywood has its narrative, and it’s going to charge you at least ten bucks a ticket for the privilege of getting pummeled by Johnson’s version of it.
My wife and I saw the Knives Out trailer on the big screen earlier this summer, and it’s being sold as a star-studded, darkly comic, murder mystery — a sort-of 21st-century Clue. There’s nothing overtly (or even covertly) political about the trailer. Some slightly NSFW language, but watch:
Whether or not the trailer makes you want to see the movie, there’s nothing in it that tells you anything like this about it, from Collider senior editor Matt Goldberg:
KNIVES OUT is a total delight from start to finish. It’s also a scathing indictment of American greed in the Trump era. I’ll have more on that when the movie opens in November. #TIFF19
— Matt Goldberg (@MattGoldberg) September 8, 2019
Pro Tip: Any movie advertising itself as a “scathing indictment” is generally not a movie you’ll want to see. Which is maybe why Lionsgate has left all the anti-Trump-voter stuff out of the promotional materials. If you want to make an anti-Trump movie, or even an anti-Trump-voter movie, fine. But be honest about it and market what you’re selling. Carla Renata, “The Curvy Critic,” thinks the movie will be a “healthy hit,” thanks in part to its “constant digs at Trumpites.” Lionsgate might make money in the short run, but the movie also might poison relations between Hollywood and Flyover Country even further. If word doesn’t get out in a big way before Knives Out is released, a lot of viewers are going to be more than a little angry at having been made the butt of Johnson’s joke twice: For two hours on the screen, and for ten or twelve bucks at the box office.
One of many things I love about Knives Out – it takes DIRECT aim at the MAGA crowd.
— Brian Tallerico (@Brian_Tallerico) September 8, 2019
Based on the trailer, I was willing to give this one a chance. The marketing geniuses had me thinking that just maybe Johnson had learned from his Last Jedi blunder, and had made an entertaining movie targeted at a wide audience. Instead, he’s given in to his anger and let the hate flow through him, directly onto movie screens in every Red State.
Emperor Palpatine, who will apparently return in some form or other in the next (not Rian Johnson-written-or-directed) Star Wars movie, would be pleased.
KNIVES OUT is a diabolical, hilarious, and massively entertaining whodunnit that updates the musty genre for the modern world and all of its MAGA assholes.
— david ehrlich (@davidehrlich) September 8, 2019
Knives Out will be released on November 27. I’ll take a hard pass on this one.