After traveling on the Blue Train from Calais to Nice, Hercule Poirot is pressed into service to help solve the murder of heiress Ruth Kettering who is found savagely beaten in her compartment. She was the daughter of wealthy industrialist Rufus Van Alden and very much wanted a divorce. Both her husband and her lover were on the train but she had changed rooms with another passenger, Katherine Grey, so the question naturally arises as to whether she was the intended victim. Grey may also have had enemies as she had recently inherited a very large sum of money and greedy relatives had suddenly taken a interest in her. When an attempt is subsequently made on Grey's life, this appears to the case but Poirot methodically sifts through all of the clues to determine the motive and identify the killer. Written by
I found this episode very weak - too many actors indulging in their own vanity, very few convincingly portraying characters. However, it lost credibility completely for me for quite some time when I think I heard Poirot say "Je vous félicitez" to Kettering when congratulating him on the inheritance he was about to get. No French speaker would make that sort of mistake.
We are supposed to believe that the Belgian detective is SO astute etc, but a mistake like that shatters the suspension of disbelief. Those who put the French into Poirot's mouth need to do their homework. I was also disappointed that Suchet hadn't sorted it himself as he's usually as fastidious as the character he plays.
I've never found an adaptation of an Agathe Christie quite as ham-fisted as this before. I'm usually completely in the thrall of Poirot, but I'll take a while to recover from this one!
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