Famous detective Hercule Poirot is on the Orient Express, but the train is caught in the snow. When one of the passengers is discovered murdered, Poirot immediately starts investigating. Written by
Murray Chapman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Wendy Hiller was second choice for Princess Dragonmiroff. Sidney Lumet's first choice was vetoed by the producers. The role was also turned down by Ingrid Bergman, who chose instead to play Greta Ohlsson, the somewhat crazy Swedish nanny, even if this part had fewer scenes than the part of the Princess. Ingrid Bergman had good instincts, since she won an Oscar for the role. See more »
At the train station, the oriental women wearing kimonos are clearly made up as Japanese, but can be heard speaking Cantonese. See more »
I love murder mysteries. I'm a sucker for them whether it's reading a book or seeing a movie. "Murder on the Orient Express" is one of the best murder mystery movies ever made. Based on the novel by mystery sleuth Agatha Christie, it takes you on a ride by train where we meet an assortment of colorful characters all traveling on the Orient Express. When one of these characters is murdered, the rest become suspects. And it's up to famed Belgian detective Hercule Poirot to solve the crime. "Murder on the Orient Express" has an intriguing script, good direction, and a spectacular cast to boot. Albert Finney is picture perfect in his Oscar nominated portrayl of the fussy Poirot. While watching Finney in this movie, I can't believe that this is the same man who played Julia Roberts' boss in "Erin Brockovich" because he's so unrecognizable here. Finney is supported by an all-star cast of mostly familiar faces. Of the actors playing the suspects, Lauren Bacall scores highest as an annoying American woman who talks loud and isn't afraid to say what's on her mind. Also good: the great Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman who won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar (her third overall) for her small performance as an African missionary; and Martin Balsam as the director of the line and Mr. Poirot's personal friend. Jacqueline Bisset, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Sean Connery, John Gielgud, Wendy Hiller, Anthony Perkins, Vanessa Redgrave, Rachel Roberts, Richard Widmark, and Michael York round out the familiar cast. "Murder on the Orient Express" is a classy movie to be sure. Is this the best murder mystery movie ever made? Almost. A few years later came the next Agatha Christie movie "Death on the Nile", which in my opinion topped "Murder on the Orient Express" and ranks as my all-time favorite mystery movie. But "Murder on the Orient Express" places right behind "Death on the Nile" as the second best. There is no question that these two movies would be perfect to show on television as a double feature. Stick 'em on AMC, and your all set.
***1/2 (out of four)
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