Thought there was a Murder on the Orient Express Thread, but can't find it, so.... (spoilers, maybe)

There’s a second run theater here that shows matinees for two dollars. I take my son there a lot.

BTW, what’s this now with theaters having rules that people under sixteen must be accompanied by an adult? There’s one that even specifies “adult over 25.”

I used to go to movies with just friends starting about age 7, and we didn’t cause trouble. If a theater has to have a rule, isn’t 16 kind of old? I mean, they charge adult prices for people 12 and up, but won’t let a 12-year-old see a movie unaccompanied?

And no, I’m not talking about R movies-- I’m talking ANY movie.

No, I didn’t think it was good. I thought it was, well, remarkable. I thought Albert Finney’s was good. So, apparently, did Agatha Christie herself.

I read the book just before seeing the movie, and I was still confused. God help anyone going in blind. The secondary characters barely get any attention, so you never feel like you have a grip on everyone.

And that moustache was horribly colored and shaped. So distracting.

Taking a pee break from watching the David Suchet version.

So far, on a scale of 1-5

1974 version, 5
2000 TV movie, 0
TV “Poirot” version, 4
2017 version, 2.5 (the .5 is because there were a couple of great performances in spite of everything, like Willem Dafoe)

I see the Japanese version on IMDb. I’m very curious about it.

Also, there apparently is another TV version from another British TV Poirot.

I’m seeing this later on today.

I’m really trying not to have the already-framed “the 1974 version is the best adaptation” thing already in my head because I do want to give this movie a chance.

Will let you know what I think later.

Never saw any version of the book, nor have I read the book.

I loved the movie.

I thought it was a classic case of the movie only being as good as the people in it, and I thought everyone acted superbly and while I knew the ending was “everyone did it”, I didn’t know what that actually meant, so I was intrigued. Mrs. Cups didn’t like it as much because she didn’t like the end where he just walked away and went onto the next murder.

I’m putting the book on my library list now.

This is actually a rare example of a movie I liked better than the book (novelizations aside). This is not generally true for me, and not even true of mysteries, or even Agatha Christie, but the 74 film I liked better than the book. And reading the book, you wouldn’t think it would lend itself to being filmed, but the camera work is brilliant. There’s a sort of Rashomon feel to the central part of the movie, and the stuff with the deep focus was great. The new film lacks “spark,” or something.

But the book is still very good Christie.

I liked the movie well enough (7 out of 10). I’ve read the book and vaguely remember the '74 movie as a kid (my parents are big Christie fans). Branagh obviously enjoyed playing Peroit and perhaps it was a bit over-done but still fun. I enjoyed some of the camera work and the scenery was delicious.

That said, I was confused about one of the plot points. Near the end the doctor shouts “Why are you still alive?!” while trying to (presumably) kill Peroit. Peroit then somehow uses that to connect the dots and realizes that they all were in on the murder. What was that all about?

I liked the new version well enough, but it pales in comparison to the 1974 version. One interesting thing that happened was that I found that the new version was full of the ghosts of 1974. Before I went in, I could remember only a few of the actors from the older movie, but each time a new character was interviewed, I suddenly remembered their counterpart (Arbuthnot – Oh, that’s Sean Connery!; McQueen – Anthony Perkins!)

I got home yesterday afternoon and immediately started watching the 1974 version. It still holds up beautifully - Ingrid Bergman won an Oscar, and I can guarantee that Penelope Cruz will not. But most importantly, Lauren Bacall carried the movie and made it work, and while I like Michelle Pfeiffer, she is no Bacall.

In reading various articles about the new and old versions, I saw a quote from Christie that one thing she didn’t like about 1974 was Poirot’s mustache. She said it was supposed to be the finest in England, and Finney’s was not that great. So Branagh may have been working off that quote in trying to create a more impressive mustache. In that one area, I believe he succeeded.

Also, his Much Ado is one of my top 10 favorite movies, so I can forgive him a vanity project, especially one that’s this well done, even if it doesn’t live up to its predecessor.

I think this version will work best for people like Sir T-Cups, who don’t have 1974 to compare. If it brings more people like him to Christie, that’s not a bad thing.

Over all it was pretty good, but the 1974 version was better.

Yeah, that was just plain stupid.

Now I’m conflicted. I have a special $5 Tuesday movies at AMC so I was planning on seeing Murder on the Orient Express. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen the 1974 version, but I’ve read the book at least 100 times, I’ve gone through 2 paperback copies and now have it on my Kindle, it’s perfect book before bed. I haven’t seen the new Thor I might see that if MOTOE is that bad. I assume Murder doesn’t need to be seen on the big screen while a Thor movie would be far better on the big screen than a blu ray rental.

I liked everything about the 1974 movie version except for Albert Finney’s hunched-up, arm-waving, shouting Poirot.

I love Suchet’s Poirot, but really, really did not like his version of the Orient Express.

This fell somewhere in between. I didn’t like Branaugh’s Poirot at the beginning, but over the course of the film I got used to the look. I suppose he was un-Poirot-ish enough that I stopped thinking of him as the familiar character and started thinking of him as the detective in this story. The thing with the photo of his old love. The action sequences. Uh-uh.

Few of the other people involved did enough to make them stand out, but I did enjoy the comic relief provided by young man whose family owned the train company, and thought Derek Jacobi’s accent was great–it didn’t sound like him at all.

LOL, I was doing the same thing! I think there were also a couple other passengers there which weren’t in the 1974 version…? I know there were some which weren’t as prominent (the Count in this version barely speaks English and smashes his fist into things; the 1974 Count was Ryan O’Neal who IIRC had more to do). I kept pointing this out to my poor husband who’s never seen the 1974 version, LOL.

MP tried, but yeah, she’s no Bacall. Nobody is nowadays. I think that’s the biggest disappointment for me – we just don’t have stars of that caliber anymore, not even Judi Dench whose part was reduced to a few lines (again, IIRC Wendy Hiller’s princess had much more to say during the interview). PC was OK, but again, she’s no Bergman. I did like Daisy Ridley’s Miss Debham, though.

My take? I think more was spent on the atmosphere and long-range mountain shots than the mystery itself. The Western Wall scene could’ve been taken out without any ill effect (and gah, that rabbi/priest/imam joke – ugh). As I said to my husband, the movie has a lot of pretty padding in exchange for characters who are more a distant background chorus for the glory of Branagh’s vanity than characters in their own right (see 1974 version).

OTOH as others have said, I’m all for bringing Christie to modern audiences. If this movie succeeds in doing so, more power to it and Branagh.

The Count was Michael York in 1974. His Countess was Jackie Bisset. They looked gorgeous.

Ah, i stand corrected :slight_smile:

Everyone in that film looked gorgeous, except Ingrid Bergman, who was magnificently dowdy. The film didn’t miss a single note. It’s really an exceptional film.

I didn’t know Christie was critical of Finney’s moustache. I knew only that she said it was her favorite of all the films of her works, so I assumed she approved of the moustache.

I think Finney’s make-up is very good. He was, IIRC, in his early 30s, and needed to be made up not to look ancient, but just to look middle-aged, and I thought that was very successful. It’s also harder to do than straight-up age make-up.

I do have to admit, David Suchet carries off the “egg-shaped head” thing, which was always Christie’s way of describing Poirot, best of anyone.

Here’s a good article about the moustache. It says that it was Christie’s husband who objected to Finney’s moustache in the 1974 film.

I think Finney nailed Poirot physically. I haven’t seen Suchet’s version so I can’t compare it, but I do remember picturing Poirot looking like Finney when I read the book.

I went into this version knowing that Branagh’s portrayal wasn’t going to be anything like Finney’s. His mustache was deeply disturbing to me.

Branagh is a handsome man, and he knows it. He seemed unwilling to sacrifice it to play Poirot. But Christie made it pretty clear that Poirot was not a handsome man. It made Branagh perfect for Gilderoy Lockhart, but a lousy choice for Poirot.

Yes, the moustache was disturbing, but I always did get the feeling that if I saw Poirot in real life, I would hate his moustache.

Also, the old sweetheart was idiotic. I’m glad someone else said it. I was worried it was from a book that I either had not read, or read a long time ago and had forgotten about.

It was a good film, the only thing that spoiled it for me was the obvious “green screen” when they were outside. No steam in the breath for example. Direction and cinematography were excellent and interesting at times making good use of the limited angles available in a train setting. The very nature of the original story means you are going to get “star studded” rather than “ensemble” casting. I thought the ending was played differently enough from the 1974 version to make it worthwhile. Left the cinema feeling rather melancholy for some reason, must have been Hercule Poirot’s resignation to his fate I guess.