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Agatha Christie - A Life in Pictures

9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The world’s most famous mystery writer is somewhat of a mystery herself. This innovative BBC drama uses documented accounts and Christie’s own words to probe the shadowy areas of her early life in a style as gripping and suspenseful as any Christie story. By exploring what really happened during her mysterious 11-day disappearance in 1926, it traces the events that shaped her career as the undisputed "Queen of Crime." Starring Olivia Williams (The Sixth Sense) as the young Christie with Anna Massey (Possession) as Christie in her later years. Also featuring Raymond Coulthard (Emma) and Anthony O’Donnell (Vera Drake).

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Agatha Christie: A Life in Pictures is a more satisfying, and apparently more factually based, version of the events that transpired in Michael Apted's 1979 feature Agatha. In 1926, the renowned mystery author Agatha Christie, creator of fictional detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, disappeared for 11 days, prompting a nationwide hunt. When she was discovered, it was clear she had no memory of who or where she was, or what specifically happened to precipitate her crisis. The ingenious A Life in Pictures approaches these extraordinary events from two angles: first, as seen by the then-contemporary Christie (Olivia Williams), undergoing psychiatric care and confronting old fears and memories, and much later, in 1962, as an old woman (Anna Massey) interviewed on the 10th anniversary of Christie's hit play, The Mousetrap. This taut drama has an unnerving and spooky quality underscoring Christie's psychological distress. But what's most interesting is the story's growing portrait of a woman living two lives, one for the public and another for herself. There's some fun in here, too: a sequence in which Christie explains how she invented Poirot (inspired by Belgian refugees she knew during World War I) is charming and playful. --Tom Keogh

Special Features

  • Agatha Christie archival photo gallery
  • Cast filmographies

Product Details

  • Actors: Olivia Williams, Anna Massey, Raymond Coulthard, Stephen Boxer, Anthony O'Donnell
  • Directors: Richard Curson Smith
  • Writers: Richard Curson Smith
  • Producers: Colette Flight, Jacquie Hughes, Leanne Klein, Tessa Pemberton
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: August 29, 2006
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009WIEAM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #91,037 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Agatha Christie - A Life in Pictures" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By bernie HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on January 12, 2006
Format: DVD
We get an insight from her childhood played by Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley in the Harry Potter Films), her flirtatious days, her first marriage, her 11 day disappearance, and her second marriage. No longer is she the woman of mystery. Or does this just bring up more mystery and speculation?

The mid-age Christ1e is played by Olivia Williams (Anna Crowe in "The Sixth Sense") and the aged Christie was played by Anna Massey (Lady Bailey in "Possession".)

This film is a must for Christie fans and the curios alike. It holds your attention and you find yourself speculating and getting ahead of the story. The only drawback is the sound byte formula where they focus on one person or item no linger than five minutes and then cut to something else. Along with this is the back and forth through time gimmick where you start in the present and go back to her mid-age psychiatrist, then her childhood, then her disappearance, then her old age then, mid-age psychiatrist, and so forth.

Agatha Christie's Romantic Detectives (Tommy & Tuppence 1 & 2 / Why Didn't They Ask Evans? / Seven Dials Mystery / Agatha Christie A Life in Pictures)
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The '04 documentary style film `Agatha Christie - A Life in Pictures' provides a marginally interesting biography/psychological study of the famous English mystery novelist Agatha Christie. The film bounces back and forth through time to tell its story, featuring Oliva Williams and Anna Massey in the role of Agatha at different stages of life. The primary focus of the plot deals with Agatha's infamous eleven missing days of that baffled England and the apparent and convenient amnesia following her return.

In an attempt to add to the documentary feel of the feature the film switches to black and white during the recreated sequences involving the investigation and search for the missing literary icon as well as some of the scenes of her life discussed with a psychologist during treatment after her return to her family.

There are some intriquing aspects worthy for investigation into the author's life such as the reoccurring apparition of what she referred to as "the Gunman", but overall her life unfolds as a rather dull and gloomy existence. This isn't a bad film by any means, it's just something geared to a very select audience. Agatha Christie fans will no doubt love it.

My Rating: -3 ½ Stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Harold Wolf TOP 50 REVIEWER on April 6, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Agatha Christie's life is as mysterious and compelling as her books were to millions upon millions. And still are. Of course many only know her by her protagonists Miss Marple and Poirot. Her stories remain in print and continue to be adapted for movies and television. Her play written in the early 1950s continues to run in London, and has continuously since the first curtain. Arguably she is the most significant mystery author of the past, present and future.

This DVD is historical drama, almost a biography documentary. It is compelling in its portrayal of Christie in two moments in her life. One is the visits to a psychologist after her several day disappearance; never fully explained. The other is the press meeting for her play's opening. The camera jumps back and forth between the two time periods revealing the life and mind of Agatha like no other presentation I have ever seen.
Anna Massey, a brilliant UK actress, does her remarkable best in portraying the attitude of Agatha as the older version.

Although it is a 2004 BBC presentation, it is timeless and as contemporaneously done as any drama today. The advantage to buyers, is the price is lower, and used very inexpensive.
Should be of interest to fans of Marple and Poirot. A docu-drama done in the style of an Agatha Christie mystery.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dennis A. Pascale on April 4, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Being a major Agatha Christie fan, I must say I enjoyed this movie. I've also read Agatha Christie's autobiography. Based on that book and the various interviews and other media on her life and writing, this biography comes pretty close to the real story, (or at least what we know of it). I wasn't so much interested in her disappearance, I wanted to see her whole life brought to the screen and this film did a nice job. It's by no means perfect, but it entertained me and that's the bottom line. I'm happy to add this to my Christie collection. It is also far more plausible than the movie "Agatha" with Vanessa Redgrave and Dustin Hoffman. As a fan, I have to say I like the fact that we will never fully know the true story of Mrs. Christie's disappearance. I little mystery from one of the world's greatest mystery writers. If you're a fan, I think you'll enjoy this movie.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By clown on December 16, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
agatha christie was brought to life in this movie the acting was exalent everything about this movie was top rate
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