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Murder on the Orient Express

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How does Albert Finney as Hercule Poirot compare to the many other actors who have played him? Is this version a better adaptation than Kenneth Branagh’s? Why was Ingrid Bergman singled out as Best Supporting Actress? Tune in to this week’s show to get these answers and more.

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"Ladies and gentlemen, you are all aware that the repulsive murder has himself been repulsively and perhaps deservedly murdered. How and why?"

Supposedly, Agatha Christie was not a fan of many adaptations of her stories. Sidney Lumet managed to assuage her concerns with his version of Murder on the Orient Express, however, as she had few problems with it (except, apparently, the mustache on Hercule Poirot).

While a fun and intriguing mystery, though, the simplicity of her puzzle does wear thin through today’s eyes as we become more aware how basic the characters are. It all still works, but it’s not as thrilling. Still, this story does unique things with the murder mystery tropes that makes it stand out. Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our Ingrid Bergman series with Lumet’s 1974 film, Murder on the Orient Express.

We talk about what works and what doesn’t in this mystery tale and how that affects whether the film holds up. We look at the incredible cast to see who is able to stand out. We talk about Albert Finney as Poirot and debate whether he’s the better Poirot or Kenneth Branagh. We discuss the awards for the film and question Bergman’s Oscar win. And we look at Geoffrey Unsworth’s cinematography and some of the tricks he and Lumet play to focus moments of the story.

It’s an interesting film and a fun one to talk about, but one that falls apart a bit when discussing at length. We have a great time breaking it down so check it out then tune in to this week’s show. The Next Reel – when the movie ends, our conversation begins.

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