Thursday, November 9, 2017

MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS

Murder On The Orient Express 2017 movie
A murder occurs on the Orient Express and famed Belgian detective Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh) is on the case. His suspects include all of his fellow passengers and the crew on board. When this train ride through Europe gets halted by an avalanche, Poirot has his hands full trying to unmask the killer.

A stellar cast and lush scenery make this latest filming of Agatha Christie's 1934 novel an
entertaining, if not riveting, journey. For those who haven't read the book or seen previous screen adaptations, no details will be revealed here. While it's difficult to top the 1974 film that gave us the unforgettable Albert Finney as Poirot, director/star Kenneth Branagh is remarkable in his own interpretation of the brilliant and eccentric detective. Branagh's biggest competition is his mustache, a character in its own right (a Best Supporting award?). There's much scene-chewing going on here. Among the upstaging players are Johnny Depp, Judi Dench, Josh Gad, Penélope Cruz, Willem Dafoe, Daisy Ridley, Leslie Odom Jr., Michelle Pfeiffer and Derek Jacobi. Surprisingly, they are all upstaged by Haris Zambarloukos' stunning cinematography. This movie, with a screenplay by Michael Green, works best for an audience that has no knowledge of the story in any form. The fun is in following Poirot as he discovers the clues that lead to the crime's solution. I would like to see Branagh return as Poirot in another movie, especially since there is a reference to another Christie mystery near the end. A touch of humor and intrigue balances out the lack of action. "Murder on the Orient Express" chugs along at a leisurely pace. (3 CAMS)


Rated PG-13 (violence and thematic elements)
Running Time: 114 minutes