Hungering For More Whodunits Like Knives Out? Check Out These 19 TV Shows and Movies
If you're a fan of Rian Johnson's Knives Out, chances are you're a lover of whodunits. Welcome to the club, chief! Who doesn't love the thrill of a mystery and the rush of solving a crime, especially when it's seemingly impossible? Knives Out gave fans a new way to enjoy the classic murder mystery, so it's hard to decide what compares, but you're in luck; we've gathered 19 shows and movies with themes and adventures similar to those in the 2019 film — though we all know there's nothing quite like Daniel Craig's Detective Benoit Blanc. Need something to hold you over as you wait for the far-off sequel? Check out the following titles.
Netflix's Murder Mystery has the same humorous tone and a whodunit plot that Knives Out fans will enjoy. Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler star as Audrey and Nick Spitz, a married couple who escape to Europe on a romantic vacation in hopes of reigniting their spark. Their plans are abruptly turned upside down when they're thrown into a dinner party that turns into a crime scene.
A master thief, cold fusion secrets, and a thrilling double-cross make this Val Kilmer film a fast-paced treat. Kilmer plays Simon Templar, a debonair thief who finds a target on his back when the top-secret formula he steals during one of his jobs turns out to be incomplete. Elisabeth Shue costars as the only doctor who can help him out of his jam.
How to Get Away With Murder
How to Get Away With Murder follows law professor Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) and her hapless students as they navigate legal cases and their own shady secrets. With each season featuring a new mystery to solve, Knives Out fans will also be guessing with this series!
Ready or Not
Ready or Not isn't a mystery, but the social commentary surrounding privilege will definitely strike a chord in fans of Knives Out. The horror-comedy stars Samara Weaving, Adam Brody, and Andie MacDowell, and follows Grace (Weaving) as she marries a man whose family is extremely wealthy. On her wedding night, she finds herself trapped in a deadly game of cat and mouse at her in-law's luxurious estate and fighting for her survival.
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Similarly to how Knives Out plays around with the whodunit genre, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang subverts the familiar tropes of noir films. Robert Downey Jr. stars as a two-bit criminal who finds himself smack-dab in the middle of a murder mystery, dragging along his childhood sweetheart, Harmony Lane (Michelle Monaghan), and hard-boiled private eye Perry van Shrike (Val Kilmer). Downey and Kilmer are a humorously mismatched pair who are as fun to watch as Craig's Detective Benoit Blanc and de Armas's Marta.
Murder on the Orient Express
The oft-remade film based on the classic Agatha Christie novel of the same name is an iconic mystery following Detective Hercule Poirot as he investigates a murder while riding on a train called the Orient Express. Viewers may vary on which version they like best, but the all-star cast of the 2017 rendition is very similar to Knives Out's vibe.
Considering that Clue was one of the inspirations for Knives Out, it shouldn't be a surprise to see the movie on this list. If you've never seen the film, we're not passing any judgment, but you definitely should get a jump on that!
This dark comedy follows a cast of well-to-do characters who become suspects after a posh English party is interrupted by a murder. Dame Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon, Helen Mirren, and Clive Owen star in the murder-mystery that also serves as a discussion on class differences and power dynamics.
This might be cheating, since Brick happens to be Johnson's feature directorial debut, but the man clearly has a type! The vastly underrated high-school noir flick stars a young Joseph Gordon Levitt as the slick-mouthed investigator hunting down the truth behind the disappearance of his ex-girlfriend. Despite being set in a modern high school, Brick's old-school detective motifs provide it a level of gravitas that drives the mystery forth and makes the story 10 times more compelling.
Veronica Mars (the Movie)
The Veronica Mars film picks up several years after the series originally ended in season three, and it follows the titular private investigator as she gets caught up in her old life of solving mysteries. There's the usual whip-smart quips, misdirection, a fair bit of action, and a bit of social commentary that will be more than enough for Knives Out fans.
This dark comedy is a bit more acerbic than Knives Out, but fans will get a kick out of its satirical nature and Hitchcockian schemes. The series follows five self-absorbed friends who become entangled in an ominous mystery when a former college acquaintance goes missing. Their investigation quickly goes left and before they (and the audience) know it, they're embroiled in covering up a murder!
Veronica Mars (the Series)
If there's ever a clever detective roundup to be found, Veronica Mars is definitely in the lineup. The iconic series follows the adventures of its beloved PI who solves various crimes in her hometown of Neptune, CA, throughout her high-school and college career, well into adulthood.
A Simple Favor
Paul Feig's dark comedy features Anna Kendrick as a fledgling vlogger who tries to solve the sudden disappearance of her glamorous but unknowable best friend (Blake Lively), and — with the same unreliability that makes Knives Out so addicting — you won't know who to trust until the very end.
Dead to Me
Featuring Linda Cardellini and Christina Applegate, Netflix's Dead to Me is about Jen, a recent widow whose husband died from a hit-and-run. While tracking down her husband's killer, Jen befriends a freewheeling woman named Judy, who isn't who she appears to be. Aside from the mystery aspect, the series also features dark and dry humor.
An innocent weekly game night takes a turn for the worse when someone switches things up for a murder mystery party complete with fake thugs and federal agents. But when one of the group gets kidnapped, everyone begins to realize nothing is as it seems to be. The friends soon find themselves in over their heads as they attempt to solve the mystery and make it out alive during one chaotic night.
The Nice Guys
Shane Black's crime-comedy The Nice Guys stars Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe as unlikely partners who team up to solve the mysterious disappearance of Amelia (Margaret Qualley). The film subverts the usual conventions of the hard-boiled detective narrative and mixes things up by adding elements of buddy comedy and slapstick films.
We're not sure where Benoit would land when it comes to Psych's faux-psychic detective Shawn Spencer, but we would totally pay to watch the two interact. The series follows Shawn as he uses his uncanny powers of observation to solve various crimes and mysteries with the reluctant help of best friend Burton Guster.
Similar to A Simple Favor's unreliable narrator, David Fincher's Gone Girl will have you questioning every move until the last second. The iconic dark thriller follows New York-based writer Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) when his wife, Amy (Rosamund Pike), goes missing on their fifth wedding anniversary and Nick becomes the prime suspect. The resulting media frenzy causes the Dunnes's happy image to crumble and leads everyone, including Nick and Amy, to question who they really are.