And Then There Were None
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A Note Regarding Spoilers

The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for And Then There Was None can be found here.

Eight individuals - Judge Francis J. Quinncannon (Barry Fitzgerald), Dr. Edward G. Armstrong (Walter Huston), Philip Lombard (Louis Hayward), Detective William Henry Blore (Roland Young), secretary Vera Claythorne (June Duprez), Prince Nikita 'Nikki' Starloff (Mischa Auer), Gen. Sir John Mandrake (C. Aubrey Smith), and Emily Brent (Judith Anderson) plus two newly-hired staff persons, butler Thomas Rogers (Richard Haydn) and his wife Ethel (Queenie Leonard), all of whom have been accused of causing someone's death -- are invited by Mr U.N. Owen for a weekend on an isolated island, but Mr and Mrs Owen are detained in London and never arrive. One by one, however, the guests are being murdered. With no way off the island until Monday, the survivors have to figure out where the murderer is hiding.

And Then There Were None is also a 1939 mystery novel by English crime novelist Dame Agatha Christie [1890-1976]. The novel was adapted for the screen by American screenwriter Dudley Nichols. Christie's novel has been filmed a number of times, including Ten Little Indians (1965), Ein Unbekannter rechnet ab (1974), Desyat negrityat (1987), and Ten Little Indians (1989).

(1) General Mandrake is accused of deliberately ordering his wife's lover, a lieutenant, to his death. (2) Emily Brent is accused of causing the death of her young nephew. (3) Dr. Armstrong is accused of operating upon (and killing) a patient while drunk. (4) Nikki Starloff is accused of running over a couple in the street. (5) Vera Claythorne is accused of murdering her sister's fiance. (6) Judge Quinncannon is accused of being responsible for the hanging of an innocent man. (7) Philip Lombard is accused of killing 21 East African tribesmen. (8) Detective Blore is accused of perjury that resulted in an innocent man's death. (9 and 10) Thomas and Ethel Rogers are accused of killing their previous invalid employer.

Ten little Indian boys went out to dine; One choked his little self and then there were nine. 
Nine little Indian boys sat up very late; One overslept himself and then there were eight. 
Eight little Indian boys traveling in Devon; One said he'd stay there and then there were seven. 
Seven little Indian boys chopping up sticks; One chopped himself in halves and then there were six. 
Six little Indian boys playing with a hive; A bumblebee stung one and then there were five. 
Five little Indian boys going in for law; One got in Chancery and then there were four. 
Four little Indian boys going out to sea; A red herring swallowed one and then there were three. 
Three little Indian boys walking in the zoo; A big bear hugged one and then there were two. 
Two little Indian boys playing in the sun; One got all frizzled up and then there was one. 
One little Indian boy left all alone; He went out and hanged himself and then there were none.

Nikki Starloff drinks a 'lethal solution' (probably cyanide) and topples over dead.
(Ten little Indian boys went out to dine; One choked his little self and then there were nine.)

Ethel Rogers dies in her sleep, most likely from a heart attack.
(Nine little Indian boys sat up very late; One overslept himself and then there were eight.)

General Mandrake is stabbed in the back.
(Eight little Indian boys traveling in Devon; One said he'd stay there and then there were seven.)

Thomas Rogers is axed through the skull.
(Seven little Indian boys chopping up sticks; One chopped himself in halves and then there were six.)

Emily Brent is injected with a hypodermic, and a bee is found buzzing around her room.
(Six little Indian boys playing with a hive; A bumblebee stung one and then there were five.)

Judge Quinncannon is shot through the forehead.
(Five little Indian boys going in for law; One got in Chancery and then there were four.)

Dr. Armstrong is drowned.
(Four little Indian boys going out to sea; A red herring swallowed one and then there were three.)

Detective Blore is crushed by a ton of bricks.
(Three little Indian boys walking in the zoo; A big bear hugged one and then there were two.)

That leaves Vera Claythorne and Philip Lombard, one of whom must be the killer. Or could it be someone else?

How does the movie end?

After finding Dr Armstrong dead in the sand and realizing that only she and Lombard are left, Vera pulls out the gun and points it at Lombard. He explains that his real name is Charles Morley (hence, the C.M. On his overnight bag) but that he knew the real Lombard, who wound up committing suicide. Convinced that neither he nor Vera is the killer, Lombard/Morley suddenly realizes a third possibility. He tells Vera to pretend to shoot him, which she does, after which she returns to the house to find a noose hanging from the parlor ceiling and Judge Quinncannon alive and waiting for her. Quinncannon tells her that this has all been a scheme in his search for 'perfect justice' and explains that he persuaded Armstrong to help him fake his death by convincing him that, by doing so, they would catch Mr Owen. He seats himself comfortably in a chair, explains that he is dying anyway, takes a swig of a poisoned whiskey, and suggests that Vera use the noose to hang herself (One little Indian boy left all alone; He went out and hanged himself and then there were none.) before the authorities do it for her, as she is the only possible suspect. Suddenly, Morley enters the parlor and, just before he dies, Quinncannon realizes that his scheme has failed. In the final scene, the boat returns to the island, and Morley and Vera leave together.

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