25 Movies Like "Knives Out" That Will Bring Out Your Inner Detective
From Agatha Christie adaptations to more comedic takes on the murder mystery genre.
In 2019, moviegoers got to welcome a new detective into the annals of mystery movie history with the release of filmmaker Rian Johnson's Knives Out. Played by Daniel Craig, detective Benoit Blanc is summoned to investigate the death of a famous novelist (Christopher Plummer), interviewing all of his suspicious and eccentric family members and associates, including characters played by Ana de Armas, Toni Collette, Chris Evans, Michael Shannon, and Jamie Lee Curtis. In the end, of course, Benoit puts together the twisty crime and lets us in on what really happened. The detective returned for the 2022 sequel, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, and a third film featuring Craig's character is already in the works.
The Blanc universe is expanding, but there are also plenty of other movies worth checking out if Knives Out had you captivated. These include other whodunnit movies, more films that mix the mystery and comedy genres, and movies that feature other iconic detectives. Read on to find out more about 25 movies Knives Out fans will want to add to their must-watch list.
RELATED: 6 '80s Movies You Can't Watch Anywhere.
Mystery Movies Like Knives Out
1. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Starting with the obvious, Glass Onion is the sequel to Knives Out, and it follows Benoit Blanc as he looks into a mystery involving a tech billionaire played by Edward Norton and his various friends and frenemies. This time, it all goes down in Greece. The ensemble cast is just as starry as that of the first film, featuring Janelle Monáe, Kate Hudson, Dave Baustista, Leslie Odom Jr., and Kathryn Hahn.
2. Murder on the Orient Express (1974)
One name that you'll see pop up again and again on this list of mystery films is that of detective Hercule Poirot, the character created by author Agatha Christie, a major contributor to the murder mystery genre. Christie's works have been adapted into movies many times, and Poirot has been played on TV and in films by a long list of actors. One worthwhile adaptation is 1974's Murder on the Orient Express, which is about a murder that takes place on the famous Orient Express train. In this version, Poirot is played by Albert Finney, and the cast includes Ingrid Bergman, Lauren Bacall, Vanessa Redgrave, and Sean Connery.
3. Murder on the Orient Express (2017)
Or, perhaps you'd rather watch a more recent version of Murder on the Orient Express. The story was adapted again in 2017 by director Kenneth Branagh, who also stars as Poirot and has made three Christie mystery adaptations so far. Cast members include Penélope Cruz, Willem Dafoe, Judi Dench, Leslie Odom Jr., Michelle Pfeiffer, and Tom Bateman as Poirot's friend Bouc.
4. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Based on the novel of the same name by Stieg Larsson, 2011's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo stars Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander, a computer hacker who joins forces with reporter Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig) to investigate a disappearance that took place decades earlier. Be warned, though: This thrilling mystery is also very violent and disturbing.
5. The Usual Suspects
The 1995 thriller The Usual Suspects is about an investigation into the parties responsible for a massacre that took place on a ship. Even if you haven't seen it, you likely know that questions swirl particularly around the identity of the mysterious Keyser Söze. The cast includes Kevin Spacey, Stephen Baldwin, Gabriel Byrne, and Benicio del Toro.
6. Death on the Nile (1978)
Based on another of Christie's murder mysteries, Death on the Nile again features detective Poirot. This time, the murder takes place on a boat traveling on the Nile River, and Peter Ustinov takes on the role. His co-stars include Jane Birkin, Bette Davis, Mia Farrow, Maggie Smith, and more.
7. Death on the Nile (2022)
Branagh also adapted Death on the Nile in which he returned as Poirot and Bateman returned as Bouc. The ensemble cast also features Annette Bening, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Letitia Wright, and Russell Brand.
8. Gosford Park
The 2001 dark comedy Gosford Park is about a murder that takes place during a party at the titular estate in 1930s England. The twisty investigation involves both the rich guests and the staff of servants, all of whom are suspects. The large cast includes Michael Gambon, Kristin Scott Thomas, Maggie Smith, Clive Owen, Helen Mirren, and many more. Stephen Fry plays Inspector Thompson, who shows up to look into the crime.
9. Mystery Team
2009's Mystery Team is an indie comedy about a group of childhood friends who solved small mysteries together as kids. Now in their late teens, the group end up taking on a real murder case. Donald Glover (pre-Community!), DC Pierson, and Dominic Dierkes star and co-wrote the script. Other familiar faces in the film include Aubrey Plaza, Ellie Kemper, and Bobby Moynihan.
10. The Last of Sheila
The 1973 whodunit The Last of Sheila utilizes that tried-and-true mystery trope: the characters being trapped together in one place. In this version of that tale, it's a yacht owned by movie producer Clinton Greene (James Coburn). A group takes a trip to mark a year since Clinton's wife, Sheila (Yvonne Romain), was killed in an accident and end up with a new mysterious death on their hands. Dyan Cannon, James Mason, and Raquel Welch are among the cast.
11. Game Night
In the 2018 comedy Game Night, game-obsessed married couple Max (Jason Bateman) and Annie (Rachel McAdams) end up in a scavenger hunt of sorts with much higher stakes. While they originally think that Max's show-off brother (Kyle Chandler) has arranged a fake kidnapping to one-up their famous game nights, Max, Annie, and their friends find out that he's really in danger.
12. Bad Times at the El Royale
The 2018 thriller Bad Times at the El Royale is about a group of strangers—a singer(Cynthia Erivo), a hippie (Dakota Johnson), a salesman (Jon Hamm), and a priest (Jeff Bridges) among them—all staying at a remote hotel called El Royale in the 1960s. It soon becomes clear that there's more to the hotel than meets the eye, as mysteries unfold around them and their secrets are revealed.
13. A Simple Favor
Also from 2018, A Simple Favor takes viewers on a journey centered on online influencer Stephanie (Anna Kendrick) and her attempts to find her friend Emily (Blake Lively), who has disappeared. But neither woman is exactly who she seems to be in a plot that includes lies, an affair, a suspicious husband (Henry Golding), and some shocking family secrets.
The Cohen Brothers' 1996 dark comedy Fargo stars Frances McDormand as a small town Minnesota police chief investigating the murders of three people, which occurred during the fallout of a kidnapping gone wrong. William H. Macy plays a man who plots to have his wife (Kristin Rudrüd) taken in an attempt to get ransom money from her rich father (Harve Presnell). Steve Buscemi and Peter Stormare play the kidnappers.
15. Sherlock Holmes
Much like with Christie's detective Poirot, writer Arthur Conan Doyle's character Sherlock Holmes, who was created in 1887, has been featured in dozens of movies and TV shows over the years. One of the stars to most recently play the character is Robert Downey Jr., who starred in 2009's Sherlock Holmes. This movie's plot follows Holmes and his partner Dr. John Watson (Jude Law) as they look into a man (Mark Strong) who hopes to take over the U.S. for Britain using supernatural powers.
16. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Downey and Law returned for a 2011 sequel, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. Again, the plot at the center of the film has high stakes: Jared Harris' character is causing chaos and violence in an attempt to orchestrate a world war that will benefit him personally.
17. The Girl on the Train
Emily Blunt stars in 2016's The Girl on the Train, adapted from the smash hit novel, as Rachel, a woman who becomes involved in the case of a missing woman after watching Megan's (Haley Bennett) life play out as she passes her home on the train each day. Rachel can't remember what happened to her on the day that Megan went missing, other than that she woke up later with injuries and a hangover, making their personal mysteries perhaps the same.
18. The Menu
If you're looking for a mystery that also has elements of horror, check out 2022's The Menu. This frightening comedy is about a couple (Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicholas Hoult), who attend a dinner at a very exclusive and remote restaurant but come to find out that the staff has something unexpected planned for his wealthy and famous guests. Ralph Fiennes co-stars as the mysterious and terrifying chef while Hong Chau play the equally enigmatic maître d'.
19. Gone Girl
The 2014 movie Gone Girl, based on the Gillian Flynn thriller of the same name, stars Rosamund Pike as Amy, a woman who goes missing, and Ben Affleck as her husband, Nick, who becomes the primary suspect in her disappearance. Just like the book, the adaptation flips the audience's expectations, telling a twisted story that scored Pike an Oscar nomination for Best Actress.
20. A Haunting in Venice
Branagh's third Christie adaptation is 2023's A Haunting in Venice, which is based on the author's novel Hallowe'en Party. This time, Detective Poirot attends a seance where one guest is killed, setting his investigation—which possibly includes some supernatural elements—in motion. The ensemble cast this time around features Michelle Yeoh, Jamie Dornan, and Tina Fey.
21. Don't Worry Darling
Florence Pugh and Harry Styles star in 2022's Don't Worry Darling, as Alice and Jack, a seemingly perfect couple who live in an impeccably manicured neighborhood separated from the rest of society. The veneer of their utopian existence begins to crack as Alice begins seeing unexplainable things and wondering what really happens when Jack goes off to work each morning. As she follows her instincts, it becomes clear that her reality isn't what she thought—and that someone doesn't want her to know the true. Chris Pine, KiKi Layne, Gemma Chan, and Nick Kroll co-star, as does Olivia Wilde, who also directs.
The classic mystery board game Clue became a film in 1985, and that film has remained a beloved comedy classic. The movie revolves around the death of Mr. Boddy (Lee Ving) in the midst of a dinner party and his assembled guests casting suspicion on each other as more people turn up dead. The cast features Madeline Kahn as Mrs. White, Christopher Lloyd as Professor Plum, Eileen Brennan as Mrs. Peacock, Michael McKean as Mr. Green, Martin Mull as Colonel Mustard, Lesley Ann Warren as Miss Scarlett, and Tim Curry as the butler Wadsworth.
23. Murder Mystery
Well, the title alone makes this one a clear addition to the list. The 2019 comedy Murder Mystery stars Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler as Audrey and Nick, a married couple who are stuck in a rut until they're unexpectedly invited to spend time on a billionaire's yacht. Their adventure becomes even more out of the ordinary when their host, Malcolm Quince (Terence Stamp), is killed and they're swept into the investigation.
24. Enola Holmes
Sherlock Holmes' teenage sister gets some time in the spotlight with 2020's Enola Holmes. Millie Bobby Brown stars as the title character, who takes on a mystery of her own while trying to find her missing mother (Helena Bonham Carter). In this version, Sherlock is played by Henry Cavill, while Sam Claflin plays their brother, Mycroft.
2018's Searching is a unique spin on the mystery genre, as it takes place entirely through screens, including those of phones and computers. Obviously distressed when she disappears, David (John Cho) searches for his teenager daughter, Margot (Michelle La), trying to locate her through the trail she's left online through vlogs, social media posts, and financial transactions. Debra Messing co-stars as a detective working the case with him.
For more celebrity news delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.