We all love a good mystery and this movie is no different. And better yet, it's from a book by one of the most famous mystery authors of all time that I’m sure everyone has heard of. That movie is "Murder on the Orient Express" by Agatha Christie. Now, I’ve never read the book or watched the older movies so I’ll leave those two to my other partners in crime. I want to focus on and talk about the most recent movie version.
Johnny Depp was the guy who ended up murdered in it, that’s basically where our story begins. Like any mystery, the detective on this case soon realizes that things may not be as he first thought. Meaning expect twists and turns along the way with this mystery. Who did it you ask? Well, the only thing I’ll tell you is that you’ll never see this coming, well maybe if you read the book you already know, but when I first saw it, I was shocked. Now, if you haven’t read or watched this tale. I highly suggest you do, because you’re definitely in for a ride and remember it’s one that takes you through loops along the way, which is never a bad thing. Surprises are good especially in a mystery that needs solving!
Dave Says -
"Murder on the Orient Express". One of the most popular murder mysteries of all time. One of the best-selling mystery writers of all time. It’s been adapted for US television, German television, Japanese television, the BBC, and twice for the big screen. This 1934 Agatha Christie novel is absolute classic. The downside of being so well known is that it also has one of the famous endings to ever be written and filmed. There is a very good chance that you have actually heard of the ending before seeing or reading it.
The versions I have seen have all had wonderful casting. As witnessed here, the big screen features went all out for more star power. One thing I noticed when rewatching all the versions is the difference in the time when the watch was broken. They changed it for the 2010 version.
2010 -- Toby Jones, Jessica Chastain, Barbara Hershey (watch broken at 12:40)
Private detective Hercule Poirot is last minute addition aboard the infamous Orient Express.
The two tv versions were slimmed down 90 minutes each, speeding along the investigations and conclusions. The 2001 version has updates for a more modern setting. Uses of fax machines, cell phones, jeans, VHS tapes (which are now ancient. Go figure!), laptops, gawdy gold chains, pinkie rings, and watches that look like they came out of the 1980's-- even though the year is clearly mentioned as 2001 during the interrogation of Mrs Hubbard. Also mentions of laser eye surgery and tattoo removal, which wouldn't have existed in the original novel, surge it into a modern era. A complete disregard for fingerprints is agonizing to watch. The suspects should know better than to pick up evidence with bare hands. Even Poirot blows off checking for prints on the knife that a suspect handled because he's sure no other ones would be found. By the way, gloves were not worn by the killer. In fact, the entire room would have been full of prints.
A few suspects were already eliminated before the murder since they were left out of the script. Poirot's job just got a little easier. Also of note, the spitting on the dead body from the 1974 version is removed. Since the 1974 version was still set in the 30's and DNA didn't exist there was no reason to remove it. But it was removed from the 2010 and 2017 versions also set in the 30's. Blood is also a factor in these movies. In the '74 version, a little blood around the mouth and a little on the chest with the wounds. The subsequent versions had a significant amount more. I guess we can chalk that up to the sign of the times.
So many versions to choose from. Pick one or watch them all. You're sure to go for a ride. If you choose the 2017 version, the ending is used to set up the forthcoming sequel, "Death on the Nile" coming soon (hopefully) to a theatre or streaming service near you.
I love Agatha Christie stories! The mysteries are always so cleverly done and she was clearly way ahead of her time. The stories are so good that they hold up today, and obviously her characters have been played by numerous actors as Dave already mentioned. For me though, Poirot will always be Sir David Suchet, and nobody will ever convince me otherwise.
So whilst the story has been discussed so well by my colleagues I want to take a moment to discuss something that really interests me - and that is the mystery revolving around Agatha Christie's real life. What happened to her can definitely rival any of her novels, and remained a mystery even after her death.
You see on December 3rd 1926 Agatha Christie disappeared. All that remained was her abandoned car, and everybody thought the worst. There is a lot of backstory involving her mental state, her duplicitous husband, and even the idea it was a publicity stunt, but the fact remains she vanished only to appear almost 11 days later in a hotel miles from her home, with no apparent memory of what had happened.
Doctor Who actually addressed this in an episode called The Unicorn and the Wasp (trailer below), and obviously I feel that their reasoning as to what happened is probably the most likely, all things considered lol. (For those that don't watch Doctor Who but loves Agatha Christie, it is worth watching just for the numerous references made to her various works through the years - recognizable even to those that have no idea about The Doctor and his antics. (Watch time note - 4.15 - just to carry on with Dave's notes above lol)
For those looking for suggestions slightly more grounded in boring reality, I have included the link to the recent Buzzfeed unsolved video that actually discusses all the accepted theories (although not the one fashioned by The Doctor *rolls eyes* )
If you love a mystery - check out any of the versions, or any of her other tales. There is always a twist to catch you off guard. One of my favorites is the 2015 TV Adaptation of "And Then There Were None". So if you don't know where to start - try there!
The Code Word For This Article Is Mystery!
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