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Dead Man's Folly (1986)

TV Movie  |   |  Crime, Mystery, Drama  |  8 January 1986 (USA)
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 872 users  
Reviews: 21 user | 5 critic

During a murder hunt game at a country house, to which Hercule Poirot is invited as an "expert", a real murder occurs.

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(novel), (teleplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Dead Man's Folly (TV Movie 1986)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Constance Cummings ...
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Jonathan Cecil ...
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Susan Wooldridge ...
Christopher Guard ...
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Hattie Stubbs (as Nicolette Sheridan)
Ralph Arliss ...
Caroline Langrishe ...
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Storyline

Hercule Poirot is called in by his crime writer friend, Ariadne Oliver and discovers that she is troubled. She has been asked to create a "Murder Hunt" game for a fair at Nass House and she is puzzled with all the help she is getting. Poirot and his assistant, Captain Hastings arrive at the fair to see what is going on. They find a couple on the brink of divorce, a rich Lord and a dizzy Lady, an old lady, trapped in the horrors of the past and a womanizing architect. Things take a turn for the worse when during the "Murder Hunt" the girl playing the "dead" body is murdered for real, an old man's body is pulled from the local lake and the Lady of the manor goes missing when a face from her past shows up. It is clear to Poirot that someone is playing the game for real and he sets out to discover who it is... Written by Lee Horton <Leeh@tcp.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Mystery | Drama

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Release Date:

8 January 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agatha Christie's Dead Man's Folly  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Nicholas Gecks was seen for Michael Weyman. See more »

Goofs

The title of Ariadne Oliver's latest novel, "Hatchets Blood and a Parakeet", is - dependent on how you read it - incorrect in either grammar or punctuation, something which would be picked up at the proof-reading editorial stage by her publishers. See more »

Quotes

Hercule Poirot: No family portraits, Mrs. Folliat?
Amy Folliatt: When one has lost a family, portraits are only memory, and memory is like dead wood. It must be cut away if one is to go on.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Lukas: Hasch mich (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Entertaining version of an Agatha Christie story which was never one of my favorites...
25 February 2010 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

There's plenty to admire in the costumes and settings for DEAD MAN'S FOLLY, most of which takes place at a handsome English villa in the countryside where a murder party game is being prepared by mystery writer Ariadne Oliver (JEAN STAPLETON). Unfortunately, Stapleton plays her role as broadly as she did Edith Bunker and there are times where her strident voice and manner becomes almost unbearable.

Elegant settings aren't enough to bring this one up to the standard of PETER USTINOV's theatrical movies DEATH ON THE NILE or EVIL UNDER THE SUN. However, the color photography is impressive and everything looks worthy of a theatrical showing--except that none of the cast members have roles that are really fleshed out. As a result, the identity of the murderer is one of those "it could have been anybody" sort of things because, as is usual with Christie, there are almost too many red herrings among the suspects.

Never a favorite of mine, this version has the heavily overweight Ustinov strutting around and putting Hastings down with some blunt remarks--mostly for comic value. JONATHAN CECIL plays Hastings with a humorous slant--far different from the Hastings in the David Suchet series--but his contribution is an entertaining one. NICOLETTE SHERIDAN as Hattie is delightful as the dim-witted lady of the manor.

Not the best of the Ustinov TV adaptations, but it's good enough entertainment to pass the time.


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