Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express
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- "Agatha Christie: A Portrait"
- 4-part series on the making of the film
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After working on a case, Hercule Poirot (Albert Finney) travels home on the Orient Express hoping for a relaxing journey. Instead, when the train is caught in the show he's drawn into a mystery on the very train he's traveling on. A millionaire named Ratchett (Richard Widmark) has been brutally murdered. Who could the murderer be and what was his or her motive? Poirot must work this out and discover which of the train's passengers committed the crime. He discovers an unusual link between the millionaire and many of the passengers on the train. Is this the vital link that will help him solve the crime?
Featuring a stellar all cast of Hollywood and London stage and screen veterans, "Murder on the Orient Express" chugs along on the charm of the performers, a solid script by Paul Dehn ("The Spy Who Came in the Cold", "Goldfinger", "Beneath the Planet of the Apes") and outstanding direction by Sidney Lumet ("The Verdict", "Deathtrap", "Network", "Prince of the City"). The casting is a bit unusual.Read more ›
But enough about that. They rarely make films this lavishly entertaining anymore. "Murder on the Orient Express" is visually striking to say the least; the Orient Express and its various set pieces are magnificently rendered, and at no small expense either. The all-star cast is impressive; from Lauren Bacall's scene-stealing American chatterbox to Anthony Perkins' disturbing, PSYCHO-reminiscent secretary, the cast list adds emphasis to the idea of the house-party whodunit. The film is, essentially, a Hollywood party on a grand scale.
Although the film is sluggish at times and the unraveling of Agatha Christie's labyrinthine plot doesn't work as well on the screen as it does on paper, this is still great fun, the perfect Saturday night movie for viewers who like a dose of wit and intelligence with their entertainment.
Starring a cast that is simply incredible this movie set the standard for the Ustinov star studded movies that would follow (starting with 1978's DEATH ON THE NILE). Included on the list of stars are such names as Sean Connery, Jacqueline Bisset, Sir John Gielgud, Richard Widmark, Vanessa Redgrave, Ingrid Bergman and Anthony Perkins.
Aboard the Orient Express a businessman (played by Widmark) with a mysterious past is murdered in the middle of the night. Desperate to resolve the matter before they arrive at the next major stop on the line (to avoid a lengthy police investigation) Hercule Poirot is persuaded by an executive for the train company to begin his own investigation. An avalanche over the line gives Poirot plenty of time to interview all the passengers and make his conclusions as to the guilty party (or parties).
When Finney's Poirot faces off with the fellow passengers and describes his account of how the murder was committed and by whom you will be amazed - astounded. It's this very element and the star power of this movie that carries this intriguing mystery far above the standard whodunnit fare.
The movie is well plotted, the acting beyond reproach and the direction steady and inspired. MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS is a triumph in every respect, and when you consider it takes it's story from the worlds most read and respected mystery author it's not difficult to see why.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A luxurious Agatha Christy murder mystery, impeccably produced with an all-star cast!Published 2 days ago by Maine Train
I am not an Agatha Christie fan, so let's start there. From that perspective, and perhaps because of that, I enjoyed this particular rendition. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Frisbee
this is really not good you guys...would not buy it again or for a giftPublished 1 month ago by Miss Frazzled
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|The Best Poirot||
I thought Peter Ustinov's performance was great, but Poirot had BLACK mustaches and hair, often hinted at dyed. I did not like Albert Finney's performance at all, too overdone, really as if he were playing it for as comedy.
This movie was made before David Suchet took over the role, but I think... Read More
Aug 18, 2013 by Sylvia Skinner | See all 2 posts