Adaption of Agatha Christie's "Mrs. McGinty's dead". Miss Marple is the only jury member who believes that an accused is innocently charged with murder, so she joins a local acting troupe and tries to figure out who the real murderer is. Written by
This was the penultimate production in the series of four films with Margaret Rutherford as Miss Jane Marple. The last is Murder Ahoy (1964) (made the same year as Murder Most Foul (1964)), in which Inspector Craddock has been promoted to the rank Chief Inspector. After the series concluded Rutherford and her husband Stringer Davis reprised their roles of Miss Marple and Mr Stringer only once more, for a brief cameo appearance in The Alphabet Murders (1965). See more »
We see two shots which apparently show Inspector Craddock rushing to Halford's Palace Theatre. The car in the first (a Wolseley 6/99) bears the registration YGA 370. In the following shot it appears that the car has changed to a Wolseley 6/90, registration UUV 133. However it is plausible that these are intended to be two different cars, both being sent to investigate the murder, even though no other officers than Craddock are seen in the subsequent scenes. See more »
Miss Jane Marple:
Mr. Cosgood, whatever I may or may not be, I am definitely no angel... Good-bye! Good luck!
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In this, the third of a series of four films of Margaret Rutherford depicting Miss Marple, we are lavishly entertained by a witty whodunnit which is set, most appropriately, within and around a travelling theatre troupe. In my view, this is the best of Rutherford's renditions of this character - and, as ever, she is massively supported by a rock-solid cast which merges mirth with menace in adequate proportions.
The decent, yet slightly inept, Inspector Craddock (Charles Tingwell) is ably assisted, in a needy negative way, by the clearly less able policemen, Wells and Brick (Scott and Davies) in trying to convict an 'obvious' criminal for a heinous murder. Adding to this, the ineptitude of a firm and forthright judge (Andrew Cruickshank) alongside an evidently incapable jury, leads us once again to the necessity of 'our Jane' solving the crime for us. To do so, she must join a theatre group which is riddled with a relevant variety of seemingly good suspects - but which is led by an over-the-top character, Driffold Cosgood (played to perfection by the brilliant Ron Moody). The bit where Cosgood changes his mood and his mind in mid-sentance (..."Dear Lady...") is a piece that is worthy of Shakespeare as a refusal is turned into a plea - but there are plenty of other endearing and engaging moments throughout the rest of an accomplished production.
With your port, or a nice bottle of wine, wait until it's dark and raining outside, then snuggle up to this wonderful jaunt through the curious backdrop of a theatre and its performers presenting a different kind of 'playing' than one would normally expect.
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