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The Detective-Cum-Narratologist: The Trope of Whodunit in Rian Johnson’s Knives Out

Journal: Praxis International Journal of Social Science and Literature (Vol.4, No. 5)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 42-46

Keywords : Murder mystery; narratologist; postmodernism; narrative; focalization; truth; self-reflexive.;

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Rian Johnson's 2019 movie Knives Out pays a self-reflexive tribute to the century-long, rich heritage of murder mystery stories. In terms of narratology, the movie represents the postmodern obsession with composite narratives, unreliable narrator/s, and obviously the possibility of finding a single, predominant, ‘true' version of events. The detective in this respect plays the role of the narratologist whose job is to ‘read' all the versions of story present before him, and discern the valid one, if any. Playing many tricks with the observer/s, the narrative techniques of this metafiction, combined with the engrossing plot, pays a homage to the tropes used in whodunit stories.

Last modified: 2021-06-20 02:39:25