Medicine Hat News
BEST AGATHA CHRISTIE MOVIES
“Witness for the Prosecution” (1957) Not involving one of Christie’s legendary detective characters, Billy Wilder’s version of her courtroom drama casts a fabulous Charles Laughton as a twilight-years British lawyer defending an accused killer (Tyrone Power) whose wife (Marlene Dietrich) becomes the unexpected title witness for the prosecution.
“Murder on the Orient Express” (1974) Arguably the top film treatment of a Christie story to date – even the author herself approved, which reportedly was rare – director Sidney Lumet’s elegant drama boasts a great Albert Finney as Poirot in a mind-boggling cast that also includes Lauren Bacall, Jacqueline Bisset, Sean Connery, Anthony Perkins, Vanessa Redgrave, Michael York and an Oscarwinning Ingrid Bergman.
“Death on the Nile” (1978) Peter Ustinov assumes the part of Poirot to probe the murder of an heiress aboard a cruise down the legendary Egyptian river; “suspects” include Bette Davis, David Niven, Angela Lansbury, Maggie Smith, Mia Farrow and George Kennedy. (A newer version currently is awaiting release.)
“Agatha” (1979) Rather than being based on a work by Christie, this drama fictionalizes a period of her life, with Dustin Hoffman as a reporter who becomes interested in finding the missing writer (played by Vanessa Redgrave).
“Crooked House” (2017) Another Poirot-less, Marple-less Christie tale puts a private detective (Max Irons) in a race against Scotland Yard to solve the murder of an ex-flame’s grandfather. Glenn Close, Gillian Anderson and Christina Hendricks are on the suspect list.
“Murder on the Orient Express” (2017) As both star (as Poirot) and director, Kenneth Branagh gave this mystery another solid screen workout, merging great external (and computer-enhanced) views of the title train into the puzzler involving another all-star cast.