What could be more intriguing than being a first class passenger in the 1920’s on the fabled Orient Express Train which still runs today from Paris to Istanbul? The rich, the famous, the crafty, the aristocratic, the powerful all mingle in sumptuous railway accommodations.
As chance would have it, we find the world renowned detective Hercules Poirot is aboard. The well-known Belgian is called into the thick of things when a murder occurs.
The train is temporarily trapped in an Alpine snow slide giving Poirot enough time to solve the crime in Agatha Christie fashion.
The cast is froth with star actors: Judi Dench, Penelope Cruz, Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, and the relatively unknown Kenneth Branagh as Poirot who is also the director.
Here in lies the problem. The director spends yards of film of straight on face shots of the mustached Poirot for no apparent reason than ego.
“Murder on the Orient Express” is Agatha Christie’s second most famous novel. It is outranked only by “The Mousetrap” which still has not appeared on the silver screen due to codicils by Christie.
In spite of some staid direction, “Murder on the Orient Express” is entertaining and on my should-see list. It is currently playing at the Old Mill Playhouse in The Villages.
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