While on vacation at a resort hotel in the West Indies, Miss Marple correctly suspects that the apparently natural death of a retired British major is actually the work of a murderer planning yet another killing.
A friend of Miss Marple's sees a woman being strangled in a passing train. When police cannot find a body and doubt the story, Miss Marple enlists professional housekeeper, Lucy Eyelesbarrow, to go undercover.
When Gerry Wade sleeps in and is late for breakfast, his friends find that he has a very good reason - he's been murdered. Lady Eileen Brent, known to her friends as Bundle and in whose bed Wade died, returns home and decides to investigate. When a second man is killed, he mentions something about " ...seven dials...tell Jimmy Thesiger..." but Thesiger has no idea what he was talking about. What they learn is of the existence of a secret society and of a hugely valuable formula for making a specialized form of steel. But who exactly is behind the two murders and why were they killed? Written by
The roman numeral for the "eleven" o'clock position on the hoods is reversed reading 'IX' instead of 'XI'. Later in the movie it is corrected but they didn't make new hoods; instead they inked over the leading 'I' and added an 'I' after the 'X'. See more »
I found this movie to be quite an enjoyable mystery, and very true to the early Agatha Christie style in its plot device of British state secrets being stolen and sold to foreign enemies. Although some of the interior scenes, especially right at the beginning of the film, have that slightly claustrophobic "soundstage" feel, this is quickly forgotten as the characters become more familiar and the mystery gets underway. The acting is very good, and Cheryl Campbell brings a lot of energy to the part of the flapper-heroine, Lady Eileen Brent, and James Warwick, as Jimmy The singer, joins her in playing upper-class amateur sleuth with a great deal of humour. Sir John Gielgud, as usual, steals every scene he appears in, and Harry Andrews is terrific as the stolid, slow-spoken Inspector Battle. The story follows the usual pattern of complicated twists and red herrings, but the conclusion came as a complete surprise to me, which I take as the mark of a good mystery.
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