7.4/10
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Murder by Death (1976)

Five famous literary detective characters and their sidekicks are invited to a bizarre mansion to solve an even stranger mystery.

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Storyline

Despite not knowing him, the world's most famous detectives can't pass up the offer of a "dinner and murder" invitation from wealthy Lionel Twain. Each has no idea until their arrival at Two Two Twain who else will be in attendance. Those detectives are: amateur sleuths and New York socialites Dick and Dora Charleston, accompanied by their pet terrier, Myron; Belgian detective Monsieur Milo Perrier, accompanied by his chauffeur, Marcel; Shanghainese Inspector Sidney Wang, accompanied by his Japanese adopted son, Willie Wang; frumpish Brit Miss Jessica Marbles, accompanied by her invalid nurse, Miss Withers; and San Francisco gumshoe Sam Diamond, accompanied by his femme fatale sidekick, Tess Skeffington. The dinner part of the invitation runs into problems due to the non-communication between Twain's blind butler, Jamesir Bensonmum, and Twain's new deaf-mute and non-Anglophone cook, Yetta. On the murder side, the guests initially believe Twain will try to kill each of them. However, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

By the time Eileen Brennan, Truman Capote, James Coco, Peter Falk, Alec Guinness, Elsa Lanchester, David Niven, Peter Sellers, Maggie Smith, Nancy Walker and Estelle Winwood figure out whodunnit, you'll die laughing. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

23 June 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Neil Simon's Murder by Death  »

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(Metrocolor)

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where each companion reports hearing gunshots to their respective sleuth, the visual of Miss Skeffington saying "Gunshots, Sam!" was removed from the final print of the movie; only the audio is heard. Both the audio and video of the sequence were included in the trailer for the film, however (as seen on the DVD release). See more »

Goofs

At one point in the dining room Milo Perrier is referred to as Marcel Perrier. Marcel is Milo Perrier's chauffer. See more »

Quotes

Sam Diamond: The last time that I trusted a dame was in Paris in 1940. She said she was going out to get a bottle of wine. Two hours later, the Germans marched into France.
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Crazy Credits

As the opening credits begin, a pair of black-gloved hands come into frame to unlock and open a footlocker containing the cardboard cutouts of the characters. These characters are displayed with their respective name credit. As the closing credits end, the same pair of black-gloved hands come into frame to close and lock the footlocker. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Conan: Savage. Fred Savage. (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Great fun
16 March 2002 | by (Jacksonville, FL) – See all my reviews

Murder by Death is a fun movie that will no doubt be more enjoyable for fans of detective fiction and detective movies. The plot is about a group of detectives that are invited to a spooky house to solve a murder that hasn't been committed yet. The cast is star studded. Peter Sellers steals the show as the Charlie Chan character Mr. Wang. David Niven is typically classy and fun as the Nick Charles ripoff and Maggie Smith is great as the Nora Charles character. Peter Falk does his best Humphrey Bogart impression as Sam Diamond and it's pretty good. Elsa Lanchester makes a decent Ms. Marbles and the age factor is nicely aped when Estelle Winwood is mistaken for her character. James Coco is great as the Poirot character and overacts brilliantly. Truman Capote is extremely annoying but funny in spots as Lionel Twain. He's given some great lines to work with. The atmosphere is thick and the music is cool. The plot meanders toward the end and some of the "solutions" are pretty ridiculous but the rest of the movie is extremely enjoyable.

6.9/10


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