When a despised magistrate is found shot to death in the library of the local vicarage, his wife and her lover, a portrait painter living on the church grounds, both confess to the crime. Miss Marple's keen powers of observation clear both of them of the crime, but other suspects abound. Included are the murdered man's daughter, who posed for the artist, a neurotic cleric who's embezzled church funds, the local doctor, an ex-convict who poached on the magistrate's land, and a missionary's enigmatic widow who argued with him the day before he was killed. An exasperated Inspector Slack must reluctantly accept help from the analytical Miss Marple. Written by
Gabe Taverney (email@example.com)
Quote 'hbs': "Hickson is by far the best Miss Marple on screen"
Ooooh! there's a debatable point. Though I accept heartily ones opinions, I can't help thinking that's got the members of the Margaret Rutherford fan club ruffling their pillows in a disgruntled manner. Joan Hickson just doesn't do it. I don't know what it is, but she comes over leaving me thinking 'no wonder your a spinster. SMILE for gods sake'. MR I could have happily passed off as my eccentric grandmother and liked. JH does it her way, but I can't help wonder if she had her beady-eyes on this role while filming with MR in 'Murder, She Said'. Unconvincing seems to be a word that, although harsh, crops up every time JH plays this role. Watchable, for sure, but not eager for more. I also consider that I am a victim of choice here. The plots and plans are all immovable if adapting Agatha Christie. This film is no exception, so the only real ways in adapting to difference are the choice of the actor/actress, or time shift it, as with the recent 'Romeo Must Die'. JH is a superb actress I have seen many times and her talents are so easily on show here as a 'tight' Miss Marple, by which I mean non-expressive. MR was more full-on and in yer' face. 'Filo doth compare too much'. As I said, it's choice.
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