Agatha Christie's Endless Night
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Top Customer Reviews
As for the film itself, it doesn't ever reach the level of pathos and sad beauty of Herrmann's score, but it does have a memorable style all its own. The script is competent, even inspired at times, and the whole thing feels less like Agatha Christie and more like the murky thriller territory Hitchcock worked in. Hayley Mills is charming and lovely in her role; her presence here makes one wish to see more of this actress as an adult. She has been criminally underused in film, but she adds grace and warmth to these proceedings (the warmth being especially welcome in this somewhat cold film). Hywel Bennet is competent in his role, and Britt Ekland is less out-of-place in this movie than in others I've seen her in. (Is it just me or does dear Britt always seemed dubbed in every film she's in? Do they have to loop every one of her lines?Read more ›
Maybe it's because it's not so much a "who dunnit" but rather a "when's it gonna happen"?
Christie herself is said to have disliked this film version because of the brief nudity. (Bloody murder didn't phase her. How veddy British.)
Hayley Mills, who may have been bulimic during her Disney years, looks stunning (borderline anorexic?) in the part of Ellie, a lovely, lonely and very wealthy heiress (is there any other kind?) who falls in love with a poor chauffeur. Her marriage with someone far below her station is a cause of great apprehension to her family. But we root for the vulnerable newlyweds, who move into a palatial country estate said to be cursed (is there any other kind?), because we know love conquers all.
As you might guess, there is a stunning plot twist at the climax that is truly shocking. It got me and I'm jaded!
George Sanders, Britt Ekland, Per Oscarsson and Lois Maxwell co-star in this dark tale with a 70's ambience. The great music score is by legendary composer Bernard Herrmann. Even though Hayley lip-syncs Shirley Jones' title song, I'm still not sure what "Endless Night" really means. Sydney Gilliat wrote the screenplay and directed. (UK, Color, Widescreen, 99 Minutes, Not Rated, 1972)
(My title comes from a line a Scottish customer says to our protagonist, Mike, while we see him at work at a filling station.)
I read the book "Endless Night" a couple years back ... it was my former girlfriend and now fiancée's very favorite Agatha Christie novel, and she gave it to me to read as soon as she was done. I found it a most unusual book ... very unlike the other works of her's that I had read, and a couple of months after I'd finished it I began to wonder if there might have been a movie based on it. Though I didn't expect there to be, I was surprised to discover that there was ... Amazon wasn't selling it at the time, and so I managed to snag a new copy of of eBay for a very reasonable price. My girlfriend and I watched the DVD very soon afterward, and we had rather differing opinions ... My girlfriend was less than enchanted, disliking the dated seventies-ness in particular, but I on the other hand enjoyed the film very much, for a number of reasons.
First off, as other reviewers have said here already, it's very reminiscent of the work of one of my very favorite filmmakers (if not my very favorite), Alfred Hitchcock. The fact that Bernard Herrmann, a favorite composer of Hitchcock's, created the score for this helps support that feeling considerably ("Endless Night" was, by the way, released the same year as Hitchcock's penultimate film, "Frenzy"). Great music ... very atmospheric, eerie, and evocative.
The second reason why this movie is so good has really to do with the story, which can of course be credited to Mrs. Christie.Read more ›
Born to sweet delight or endless night: that is at the heart of this haunting, frightening and extraordinary story, and the film faithfully recreates that atmosphere of foreboding and doom, as well as the sense of the fragility of beauty and happiness. Though at times it's a trifle hammily acted(i'd have given this film 4 and a half stars if I could--the half taken away for some rather leaden acting at times) the story is so powerful it overcomes that, and the result is a film that's not only watchable but quite haunting as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
While it's a story by Agatha Christie (whom I love) and has Hayley Mills in it (whom my husband loves), it just wasn't worth either of them.Published 4 months ago by Karen Chez
THE STORIES ARE A BIT ON THE WEIRD SIDE, HOWEVER, ENTERTAININGPublished 17 months ago by Bonnie Gale Wolgamot
Yes, "Endless Night" is a bit dated, and yes, once in a while the acting is a bit over-the-top, but Agatha Christie is done justice with this version of one of her best... Read morePublished on February 10, 2014 by Greg Armentrout
Excellant cast, I was surprised at the slow pacing. Today's stuff moves along much more quickly. This was not a favorite.Published on February 22, 2013 by Deborah B. Elliott
Hayley Mills is excellent in this horror film. The movie is one of her better roles. I recommend this movie.Published on January 9, 2013 by WUFFMAN