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>
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 »
"Greedy" you say? Is there anything greedier than destroying something because it stands in the way of your miserable ambitions?
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The best of the Poirot made for TV movies, but not as good as Death On the Nile and Evil Under The Sun
I haven't read the book Dead Man's Folly, and this TV movie is the only one of the 6 movies Peter Ustinov did as Poirot, where that is the case. Now Dead Man's Folly I found to be very entertaining, with very good performances and a fine denouncement. However the script was weak and underdeveloped in places, the music didn't really stand out unlike Death On the Nile(the music was absolutely superb in that movie) and I found the overall film to be a tad too broad. I don't think it is as good as Death on the Nile or Evil Under the Sun, which are the best of the Ustinov outings. On a positive note, for a TV movie, it looks beautiful, with wonderful period detail, pleasant scenery and very nice photography. And the clothes were lovely to look at too. The denouncement is very unexpected and cleverly done, and I wouldn't have guessed it in a million years. But what makes the film so enjoyable is the cast. While I still consider David Suchet to be the definitive Poirot, Peter Ustinov was still a joy to behold and is clearly enjoying himself. Jean Stapleton positively brings life to the proceedings as Ariadne Oliver. Both Kenneth Cranham and Tim Piggott-Smith give good performances, if playing it safe. Jonathan Cecil is very entertaining as Hastings and Nicollette Sheridan is lovely as Hattie. But other than Ustinov the standout was indeed Constance Cummings as Amy, a truly delightful performance. All in all, while not the best of the Ustinov Poirot outings, it is a glossy and entertaining one, and actually one of the better ones. 7.5/10 Bethany Cox
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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