As a listener, between this and the Disco Elysium spoilercast, this past weekend has been absolutely delightful.
Watching Knives Out, I couldn’t help but keep thinking of Roma, and the relationship between Cleo and the family (which I believe Waypoint discussed awhile back). Both Roma and Knives Out explore the contradiction that comes from a relationship where one person is proclaimed to be family, while simultaneously being in a role of service and knowing that their livelihood and future is largely controlled by the other party. And I think the reason this comparison kept coming up in my mind because the conclusion it comes to with this contradiction was so different for each film…
In Roma, it ends with us knowing that while that difference in power creates a distance, the family genuinely loves Cleo, and yet the contradiction remains ongoing. We don’t get any easy solution, and her life situation as compared to them remains unfair. In Knives Out, the answer to the contradiction is that the notion of family was a veneer, something to assuage any possible guilt on the family’s part that she was ultimately far more deserving than they ever were. The idea of “family” was only ever there to paper over that imbalance of power, and the notion of family doesn’t keep even the most sympathetic family members from betraying her. To be clear, I definitely don’t mean to say they’re identical (especially given the makeup of the families), but I did appreciate how each explored that same imbalance in their own ways.
Also, I absolutely love the foreshadowing of Marta’s whole story with how she plays Go: she won because she wasn’t trying to beat anyone.