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Agatha Christie's Poirot: The Movie Collection, Set 5

4.0 out of 5 stars 137 customer reviews

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(Jul 08, 2003)
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(Jul 27, 2010)
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$34.75 $20.75

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Editorial Reviews

David Suchet is back as Hercule Poirot. The dapper Belgian detective takes on three more cases in these wildly popular adaptations of Christie’s acclaimed classics. As seen on the PBS Mystery! series.

Murder on the Orient Express -- Onboard the Orient Express, an unsavory traveler (Toby Jones) requests Poirot’s protection; after the man is stabbed to death, Poirot searches for the killer on the now snowbound train. The star-studded cast includes Barbara Hershey, Hugh Bonneville, and Dame Eileen Atkins.

Third Girl -- Poirot collaborates with crime novelist Ariadne Oliver (Zoë Wanamaker) to help a young heiress who thinks she may have committed a murder. When the woman’s childhood nanny is found dead, Poirot believes he has the victim--but he still has a long list of suspects. Peter Bowles and James Wilby guest star.

Appointment with Death--Hercule Poirot is visiting an archaeological dig in the Syrian Desert when the wife of Lord Boynton (Tim Curry) is murdered. Poirot carefully sorts through the woman’s many enemies to unearth the truth about her death. Also starring John Hannah and Elizabeth McGovern.

Special Features

David Suchet on the Orient Express: David Suchet hosts a guided tour of the Orient Express and it history (47 min.)
Biographies of Agatha Christie and David Suchet
Cast filmographies
SDH subtitles

Product Details

  • Actors: David Suchet
  • Format: Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: July 27, 2010
  • Run Time: 279 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (137 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0028AENVC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,073 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Agatha Christie's Poirot: The Movie Collection, Set 5" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Harold Wolf TOP 50 REVIEWER on July 6, 2010
Format: DVD
POIROT set 5 is just plain GOOD murder mystery. Agatha Christie suspense perfect. David Suchet acting excellence. Combined they make any British Mystery viewer salivate. Add top guest stars in each, SUBTITLES for the hearing and dialect challenged, and kick in some of the best filmed period mystery ever produced. It's what fans have come to expect with Poirot, Agatha Christie, Masterpiece Mystery, and the untouchable as Hercule Poirot--David Suchet. The best Poirot yet, of what I've seen.

Perhaps the best of A. Christie's books. It was written in 1934 and the story begins Sep. 26, 1938.
Poirot is allowed to fill an unoccupied birth as the Orient Express moves out from Istanbul to England. The luxury car he rides includes American Samuel Ratchett (Toby Jones), a princess (Eileen Atkins of `Cold Mountain'), railroad director Bouc, a doctor,&...well a dozen travelers. The Orient Express gets stuck in a snowdrift (a true event that inspired A. Christie) and the group is also visited with a murder in the train car. There is proof the murderer is yet on the train and Poirot (with the help of the railroader and doctor) intends to find him/her. That's the plot, simple enough, but the deed, and the unveiling of the killer is what makes this story so exceptional, memorable, and emotional. You'll want to watch it a second and third time.
...47 minutes of Suchet hosting a tour of the present Orient Express is an interesting documentary added. He took the ride prior to playing the part for this movie. Also bonus on this disc includes `120 years with Agatha Christie', a list of Poirot books, & filmographies. 89 minute feature.
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Format: DVD
First I want to make it clear that I have compared the Acorn Media DVDs to the PBS broadcast. The Acorn Media DVDs clock in from 89 to 94 minutes long while the PBS broadcast ended around the 85 minute mark, and this includes their Masterpiece Mystery open & host introduction. There is a Masterpiece Mystery logo at the beginning, but I think Acorn Media had to tag that on to connect it to PBS. This is the UK Version. I did not do a scene by scene comparison to see what PBS cut.

Regardless of the sequence listed on the box, I feel the first viewing should be THE THIRD GIRL (2009 - 94 minutes). Even though in the book canon it is much later that Orient Express, here it feels earlier. Poirot is at home in his apartment & full of the zest to excite his "Little Gray Cells" to solve a mystery. One almost expects to see Captain Hastings & Inspector Japp turn up even though they are well gone from the series. Of the three mysteries in this set, this one most feels like the earlier hour-long episodes. Production values, while good, are not as high as on the latter two destination mysteries. The action is mostly indoors, restricted to a dozen or so sets, just as in the short story adaptations. I found this to be the most fun to watch in this set, maybe because it felt familiar. A psychological mystery of a girl who thinks she may have committed a murder & the strange people around her will keep you wondering just what is up. Clocking in 4 minutes over an hour and a half guarantees that the PBS version will be missing scenes that are on this DVD.

Next I recommend watching APPOINTMENT WITH DEATH (2009 - 93 minutes). Some liberties were taken here while adapting Agatha Christie's 1938 novel, but I feel it makes for a great cinematic mystery.
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Format: VHS Tape
Thanks to Acorn Media, we may very well soon have all the Hercule Poirot episodes available for easy watching, the shorter ones on tape and the longer on DVD. With the arrival of Set 5, we have cases 13-15 from the classic BBC series that was once shown on PBS and currently in shamefully abbreviated forms on a commercial channel.
I have already posted my general comments about this series on the webpages for the first four sets, so let me cut to the chase.
"The Tragedy of Marsdon Manor" begins comically enough with a would-be mystery writer of an inn owner summoning Poirot to solve a baffling case that happens to be fictional. Naturally a real death takes place under what seems to be supernatural circumstances; and the production does indeed create a wonderfully English country manor spooky-ness that makes this worth watching. Never mind that the solution involves all sorts of twists that verge on the incredible; but to invert the aphorism in "Sleuth," this is Inspector Fiction, not Inspector Fact.
"The Double Clue" is exceptional in that it shows Poirot emotionally involved with a suspect, a fascinating (at least to him) Russian countess who might or might not be involved in a series of jewel thefts. Japp is honestly in fear of losing his job unless the thefts are stopped, while Miss Lemon and Hastings do their own sleuthing as Poirot spends time with the countess. "The Mystery of the Spanish Chest" has a plot within the plot, so to speak, rather far-fetched. However, the presence of actor John McEnery and the opening surreally filmed dueling sequence more than make up for any storyline inconsistencies.
Again, it is always instructive to compare these dramatizations with the originals; but the former stand up very nicely on their own.
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