In this section of the Colossus Movie Guide for Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, we answer questions you have about the movie. If you’re curious about plot explanations, meanings, themes, lessons, motifs, symbols, or just confused by something, ask and we’ll do our best to answer.
- Benoit Blanc – Daniel Craig
- Miles Bron – Edward Norton
- Helen Brand/Andi – Janelle Monáe
- Birdie Jay – Kate Hudson
- Peg – Jessica Henwick
- Lionel Toussaint – Leslie Odom Jr.
- Claire Debella – Kathryn Hahn
- Duke Cody – Dave Bautista
- Whiskey – Madelyn Cline
- Writer – Rian Johnson
- Director – Rian Johnson
Glass Onion | Questions and Answers
Was Miles Bron actually a genius?
No. But he did have four things going for him.
- Court vision
Miles was confident enough to just be dumb. And people just ran with his nonsense and found ways to make it into something. An example being his idea of just “Child + NFT = ?”. That resulted in millions, if not billions of dollars. Not because Miles had some genius breakthrough. But because he sent enough rambling stupidity that something worked.
That leads into the persistence part. Miles probably had hundreds or thousands of bad ideas he sent to his fax machines all across the world. But if 1 in every 1,000 was a hit, and he’s persistent enough to come up with 1,000 a year…he’ll look like a genius.
The facilitation aspect gets at when Miles joined Andi and friends. He was the weird guy with big dreams who no one really liked. But then he started making things happen. He found Birdie a modeling job. He got Duke onto Twitch. He helped Claire win an election. And also supported Lionel’s transition from teaching to a science career. He made those things happen. Regardless if they’re easy or not. He saw opportunity and helped people maximize their potential. If you start doing that over and over again on a large scale, well, success follows.
And that dovetails with court vision. Even though Miles isn’t a genius and is kind of an idiot, he still isn’t dumb. He understood how to position himself, how to use others, and how to keep getting wealthier. Sure, he took advantage of a ton of people. He’s not a good person, at all. But he had enough awareness of large scale social and political dynamics to become as successful as he had.
So not a genius. But not totally dumb.
Was a Kanye West mural on the wall?
I think so? Miles name drops celebrity after celebrity after celebrity. He has Jeremy Renner’s hot sauce. Jared Leto’s kombucha. Talks about Anderson Cooper’s birthday party. It would make complete and total sense for Miles to have a deifying mural of Kanye.
It’s possible there was dialogue in reference to the mural that ended up cut from the film after Ye’s recent controversies. We’ll have to see if Rian Johnson ever comments on this.
What did Ethan Hawke spray in everyone’s mouths?
Glass Onion makes a point of grounding itself in 2020 and leaning into the early period of the COVID-19 pandemic. Characters are isolating. They’re wearing masks. etc. etc. When the best friends and Blanc arrive at the dock to meet the yacht, Ethan Hawke has each of them receive some sort of spray. Hawke then explains no one will need masks beyond that point. The implication is that Miles is so wealthy he already had access to a COVID vaccine/blocker. Blanc tries to get more information but Hawke doesn’t explain any further and the film never elaborates on what the spray is.
Is Benoit Blanc gay?
In Knives Out, Blanc wasn’t really characterized beyond being a great detective with a healthy moral compass. We didn’t learn anything about his life. And that was fine because he wasn’t the protagonist, Marta was. But in Glass Onion, Blanc is the main character. So he needs to be humanized a bit more.
Back in October of 2022, a month ahead of Glass Onion’s release, Rian Johnson did a press screening in London. As people just saw the movie and noticed Blanc living with Hugh Grant, someone asked if that meant Blanc was gay. Johnson’s response? “Yes, he obviously is.”
Who is Phil Glass?
Miles makes a quick mention to “Phil Glass” when explaining the hourly chime. Phillip Glass is a renowned composer, probably the most well-known of the 20th century. His contemporary approach to classical music is rooted in minimalism. And is often subtle yet dramatic. He’s conducted a number of film scores, so even if someone isn’t familiar with Glass by name they’ve probably heard his work at some point. The Truman Show has Glass compositions. Candyman (1992). Secret Window. The Illusionist. Beyond film, Glass’s music was in the video game Grand Theft Auto IV, and even Netflix’s hit TV show Stranger Things.Watch on:
Does Miles Bron actually suffer consequences?
Good question. It’s implied that he will. Because Johnson doesn’t include a scene where we see Bron arrested or facing public backlash, all we can do is assume that Helen’s prophecy—that the burning of the Mona Lisa will ruin Bron and Klear—will come true. Especially since we see his friends begin to turn on him. Of course, you can make a cynical argument that someone like Bron probably has a ton of fans and connections and could spin this in a way where the consequences are minimal. But the movie also never shows us that. And because the tone of the film isn’t really that cynical but ends in a “bad guy loses, heroes win” kind of way, we should probably assume a non-cynical conclusion.
Who was Derol? What was he doing on the island?
My best guess is that Derol is another “glass onion”. The title refers to something that seems layered but is actually completely obvious (our explanation). For audiences who have watched a mystery before, Derol seems like he might play a bigger role. Like a Chekhov’s Gun kind of thing. “How will Derol impact the story? What role is he going to play?” Especially because we keep forgetting about him only for Johnson to work Derol into a scene. But, ultimately, Derol does nothing. He’s not even really a red herring. He’s just legitimately a guy who hangs out on the island. That’s it. What he seemed like he was, he was. I like to think the character’s a nod to The Beatles’ song the film is named after (read more about it).
What question do you have?
Please leave your question in the comments. We’ll answer it there or add it to the article and notify you. Thank you!
Bron plays “Blackbird “ on guitar and states that is the guitar that Paul used to write it. How can this be? It is clearly a right handed instrument but Sir Paul is a lefty.
Hey Indigo! I guess it would be that Miles is lying. And catching that detail is something only a few people would know and understand. Good on you for being one of ones who get that joke! Definitely went over my head.
Why did Andi get a box if Miles killed her?
He probably hadn’t planned to kill her until the last minute, after he had already ordered the puzzle-box invitations. Apparently she found her “napkin sketch” AFTER he planned the party. Bron mentions to Blanc that “the puzzle guy” to whom he outsourced them was late getting them out, which is why Helen found the invitation in her late sister’s mail, and why the rest of the group didn’t hear about her death before leaving for the trip. What still puzzles me is what he thought when he saw “Andi” again, apparently alive and well. Of course, we never get to find out. All we see is the look of utter horror and disbelief on his face as she and Blanc arrive on the island, and on first viewing we think it’s because he didn’t expect to see Blanc. But I have to wonder, does he think “My God, it’s a ghost!” or “Did she somehow survive after all?” or “Is this an imposter?” If he’d worked with Andi all those years he must have heard her mention a sister. Although he’s not the sharpest quill on the porcupine, he probably does figure out soon that she’s an imposter. But then he goes ahead with the party as planned anyway?
Thanks for answering, Sue! The only real indication we get is when Blanc does reveal Helen to the group, there’s a shot of Miles looking surprised. He doesn’t say anything telling. But he does have this moment of “Ohhhh”. It seems to indicate he believed it was Andi playing some game rather than her sister. I imagine if he did know, Johnson would have gone with a different reaction?
Why is Claire’s arm all red in so many scenes?