|Index||8 reviews in total|
Miss Lemon introduces to Poirot and Hastings her new "boyfriend", Mr.
Graves, who is on the service of an Italian diplomat, Count Foscatini.
When Foscatini is found murdered in his apartment, suspicions fall on
the elusive Mario Asciano, who was apparently blackmailing him.
The most pleasant surprise of "The Adventure Of The Italian Nobleman" is that, after a series of episodes where one or more of the Hastings - Japp - Miss Lemon team were missing, here they're all back together, and with significant parts. Once again you realize how much their chemistry and perfect acting contribute to this series. This is a good episode with a variety of thrills: from Poirot getting a new perspective on the case simply by looking at the mirror, to lying flashbacks, to a car chase and a punch! (***)
Agatha Christie's Poirot is a truly wonderful series, always full of
top notch production values, a great sense of atmosphere, well-composed
music, intelligently written and interesting stories, clever dialogue
with the odd funny moment and actors that play their roles with gusto.
The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman is no exception, second only to
The Adventure of the Egyptian Tomb as the best of the fifth series and
one of the standouts of the "short-story" episodes(my personal
favourites being Wasp's Nest and The Chocolate Box) The Adventure of
the Italian Nobleman has everything I love about the Poirot series.
Superb production values, from the splendid scenery to the photography
that has a very elegant and cinematic feel to it, and a hauntingly
beautiful score are just two of the great things about the episode. On
top of that, the writing is intelligent and moves the story along very
nicely, with some comedic touches that don't jar with the mood, a
meticulous atmosphere and a suspenseful and never less than thrilling
story. David Suchet still continues to be outstanding as Poirot, and
Hugh Fraser, Phillip Jackson and Pauline Moran clearly seem to be
enjoying themselves in roles that are more pivotal than other Poirots
Overall, yet another winner of one of the classiest series of its kind ever made. 9/10 Bethany Cox
How nice it is to have Poirot back working with the entire team of Hastings, Japp, and Lemon. Miss Lemon's budding romance with Mr. Graves is intriguing and reminds me of how I recollect Christie first introducing the Miss Lemon character. She said something to the effect that Miss Lemon was one of the thousands of women of her generation who remained single because so many young men were killed in World War I. The stark reminder of the devastation of that war on a whole generation made a big impression on me over forty years ago. The story concerns Poirot's investigation of the murder of an Italian diplomat. Suspicion falls upon a man who may have been blackmailing him. Aside, obviously, for the murder itself, this is a quite a light hearted episode and Poirot's final expression in the show is priceless.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman (14 Feb 93) is the second best
episode of the fifth series,almost as fine as The Adventure of the
Egyptian Tomb (17 Jan 93).The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman is a
blackmail story,very suspenseful,excellent as atmosphere,and made with
gusto."Poirot" always succeeds when it uses a few B movie touches.Miss
Lemmon's idyll gives a touch of uncanniness.Also,Graves,the servant,is
one of the notable actors that appear in this series."TAOTIN" has more
than one comical feature (the Italian lady that explains Hastings about
car engines,etc.).Miss Lemmon's new friend,Graves,tells Poirot about
his master being blackmailed.This blackmailed master is an Italian,as
is his supposed blackmailer.On the other hand,Hastings wants to buy a
car,and so has business with the Italian dealers.
Dead Man's Mirror (28 Feb 93) belongs to the same class of episodes with touches of B movies.It is about a rich aesthete,Gervase,and his entourage of young people (John,Hugo, Ruth); it is also another episode with a beautiful young actress:this time,it is Ruth (Emma Fielding).It is as good as the previous episode analyzed here (TAOTIN).Miss Lemon is absent in this one.
The Jewel Robbery at the Grand Metropolitan (7 Mar 93) is another very good episode,and it features a beautiful actress,Hermione Norris (I believe).The photography is fine,there are some well-done images of a necklace,and several comical touches.It is an elegant and humorous episode,a necklace mystery in the theater's world.It is funny to see Japp at a fair.The episodes begins with Poirot's illness.
Yellow Iris (31 Jan 93) begins very funny,very well,with a dialog about food and cuisine and the obvious difference between them,with Poirot taking,of course,the side of the cuisine,while Hastings does not want to notice that difference.There is a connection with the plot,much of the action happens in a restaurant (first a South-American,then a London one).The readers and grateful,studious,devoted connoisseurs of G. K. Chesterton will be glad to identify the invisibility's theme,that reminds the one proposed by G. K. Chesterton in one of the short proses from The Wisdom of Father Brown:how can one be practically invisible? ;unfortunately,in the TV version of the "Iris" this does not work too well,or as well as one would have liked.
The Case of the Missing Will (7 Feb 93) has some very dissatisfying elements,but the intelligent treatment overrules them.First,it would have been appropriate that the characters and their reciprocal relations be identified in a more explicit way (that is,the three kids,then teenagers,the two couples,the single woman,etc.).Then,these characters are probably the most annoying in the whole series,rattlers,with their debates,verbosity, ravings and antics. A rich oldster is killed just before the day he planned to modify his will;fortunately,he had managed to inform Poirot about his new intentions just on the eve of his death.The mystery itself is not particularly interesting either. Yet I do not want to seem that I complain too much,because,as they are,these episodes are still better than most other stuff on the market.The plot is about greed and money,and a murder caused by these two motors.The cinematographic treatment is,as usually,satisfying,but the content is trite ;still, there is a very pleasing atmosphere of freshness and energy.
(It might be interesting to note that Michael E. Grost includes THE ADVENTURE OF THE Egyptian TOMB,THE ADVENTURE OF THE Italian NOBLEMAN,THE JEWEL ROBBERY AT THE GRAND METROPOLITAN, THE YELLOW IRIS, THE UNDERDOG in his interesting list of the best Poirot episodes.)
A murder is committed and Poirot, Hastings and Miss Lemon are all
independently connected to the victim in some way. Poirot is having
dinner with a doctor friend when a patient, Count Foscatini, phones to
say he has been attacked. The doctor and Poirot race to the Count's
flat to find him murdered, bludgeoned to death. Hastings recognises the
Count from the Italian car dealer where he just bought his car.
Meanwhile, Miss Lemon is dating the Count's valet, Mr Graves. Mr Graves
had previously mentioned to Poirot that the Count may be interested in
using his services, as he was being blackmailed. From Mr Graves'
testimony, it appears that the main suspect is Mario Ascanio, an
Italian gentleman who appeared to be the Count's blackmailer. The
police set out to find Mr Ascanio.
Intriguing and engaging. Not entirely obvious who it is and there are a few good red herrings along the way.
Some fairly engaging sub-plots too, esp Hastings and his car (if it was his car it would be golf...) and Miss Lemon's love-life.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Miss Lemon's new beau, Mr. Graves, is secretary to Count Foscatini. He
is concerned about some missing papers and believes his employer is
being blackmailed for these papers. When the Count is found murdered,
suspicion immediately falls on the mysterious blackmailer. And Poirot
is on the case.
The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman is truly one of the better Poirot episodes. There's really a lot to like here. The mystery is very engaging. The solution is as clever as any in the entire Poirot series. The mirror clue is especially nice. Acting, as always, is first- rate. It's nice to see the four regulars in an episode after several in a row where one or more was missing. Pauline Moran does a great job showing Miss Lemon's restrained joy over her relationship with Mr. Graves. The supporting cast is very strong. David Neal and Anna Mazzotti were highlights for me. There's a bit of comedy in the episode that works as intended. The car chase scene at first seemed a little out of place, but it's well done. Finally, The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman looks fantastic. The cars, the locations, and the costuming are all perfect.
I've really got nothing negative to say. A well deserved 8/10 (probably should be 9/10) from me.
Hastings is surprised when Miss Lemon arrives late to work, but Poirot
is nonplussed in "The Adventure of the Italian Nobleman." Poirot knows
that Miss Lemon has been dating one Mr. Graves, secretary to Count
Foscatini. Actually, Mr. Graves wants to discuss a matter of some
stolen papers with Poirot. Poirot really can't help him as the
sensitivity of the documents precludes Graves from saying anything
When Count Foscatini is found dead, Poirot, Hastings, and Japp are on the case. The first thing they find out is that Mr. Graves is a valet, not a secretary. The police think Foscatini was a victim of blackmail. The Italian Embassy claims not to know him. Poirot thinks they're lying, but also that they're not the only ones.
Excellent episode. I don't know why Hastings, Lemon, and Japp weren't always around. They add so much to the episodes when they're present. The solution to this one is clever, and it occurs to Poirot when he's looking in the mirror that he's been studying this case the wrong way.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
All the usual suspects are present in this entertaining tale of an
Italian nobleman being blackmailed in order to have a scandalous stolen
treaty returned -- Hercule Poirot, Chief Inspector Japp, Captain
But in this one, Miss Lemon (Pauline Moran), "has an admirer," as Poirot whispers delicately to Hastings. I thought she looked too happy. And I'm frankly tired of Miss Lemon flinging her voluptuous pulchritude around with such abandon. Oh, don't kid me. She KNOWS how hot she is. All those oh-so-shy smiles and those big blue eyes only serve as a transparent mask for the nymphomaniacal harlot that lies beneath. And that enormous protuberant rack. You could play a hand of bridge on it. She positively RADIATES heat, and it's sickening. Suppose a six-month old child is goggling at her and her saucy contours. The kid is certain to grow into a salivating pervert. But I don't hate her for what she is. I just feel sorry for her, driven by the frenzy of her Bartholin glands. Anyway, her suitor, who has tried to pass himself off as the Italian Count's executive secretary is in reality merely his mousy valet.
I've been dying to get that off my chest. Thank you. So this Italian nobleman gets bashed over the had in his office. Poirot leaps to the conclusion that the blackmailer who visited him ran off with both the money and the document that would have led to Il Duce's embarrassment.
I don't think I'll go much further into the plot. There is a semi-comic car chase, unusual for these stories, and an equally reckless performance by David Neal as Bruno Vizzini. His parched features, a creative configuration of lines and wrinkles, is unforgettable. And Miss Lemon's admirer turns out to be unworthy -- even of HER.
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