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Evil Under the Sun (1982)

PG | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 5 March 1982 (USA)
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3:01 | Trailer
Trying to find how a millionaire wound up with a phony diamond brings Hercule Poirot (Sir Peter Ustinov) to an exclusive island resort frequented by the rich and famous. When a murder is committed, everyone has an alibi.

Director:

Guy Hamilton

Writer:

Anthony Shaffer (screenplay)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Ustinov ... Hercule Poirot
Colin Blakely ... Sir Horace Blatt
Jane Birkin ... Christine Redfern
Nicholas Clay ... Patrick Redfern
Maggie Smith ... Daphne Castle
Roddy McDowall ... Rex Brewster
Sylvia Miles ... Myra Gardener
James Mason ... Odell Gardener
Denis Quilley ... Kenneth Marshall
Diana Rigg ... Arlena Marshall
Emily Hone Emily Hone ... Linda Marshall
John Alderson John Alderson ... Police Sergeant
Paul Antrim Paul Antrim ... Police Inspector
Cyril Conway Cyril Conway ... Police Surgeon
Barbara Hicks ... Flewitt's Secretary
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Storyline

Hercule Poirot (Sir Peter Ustinov) is called in to investigate a case for an insurance company regarding a dead woman's body found on a moor, and then an important diamond sent to the company to be insured, turns out to be a fake. Poirot discovers that the diamond was bought for Arlena Marshall (Dame Diana Rigg) by Sir Horace Blatt (Colin Blakely), and Arlena is on her honeymoon with her husband and stepdaughter on a Mediterranean island hotel. He joins them on the island and finds that everybody else starts to hate Arlena for different reasons, refusing to do a stage show, stopping a book, and for having an open affair with Patrick Redfern (Nicholas Clay), another guest, in full view of his shy wife. So it's only a matter of time before Arlena turns up dead, strangled, and Poirot must find out who it is. Written by Lee Horton <Leeh@tcp.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Holidays can be murder. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | German | French

Release Date:

5 March 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Evil Under the Sun See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,690,774, 7 March 1982

Gross USA:

$6,110,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$6,110,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Second of six appearances playing Detective Hercule Poirot by Sir Peter Ustinov. See more »

Goofs

Poirot claims that Daphne could not possibly have seen in the mirror Kenneth Marshall sitting at the desk typing. However, the next shot is of the desk from Daphne's viewpoint and the typewriter is clearly visible. If Kenneth had been typing, his hands on the keys would be in view, and if he were leaning forward, a large part of his body would be as well. See more »

Quotes

Daphne Castle: [greeting the Redferns] Hello! I'm Daphne Castle - welcome to the island.
Patrick Redfern: How do you do.
Christine Redfern: [unenthusiastic] It looks lovely, I'm sure we'll have a nice time here.
Daphne Castle: [twinkling] And a naughty one too - I hope!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits feature watercolors by British architect and artist, Sir Hugh Casson, who taught Prince Charles to paint. The titles for each actor feature an item of costume, prop or setting relevant to their character and those for the production team are similarly themed. See more »

Connections

Referenced in There's Nothing Out There (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

I Concentrate On You
(uncredited)
Written by Cole Porter
Heard as a theme
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Humorous Yet Satisfying Version of a Christie Tale
14 August 2014 | by l_rawjalaurenceSee all my reviews

The fourth in the series of Brabourne/ Goodwin produced adaptations of Christie that began with MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS (1974). This one, set on an island in the Mediterranean (actually filmed in Majorca) has Peter Ustinov in his second outing as Poirot investigating the murder of a self-interested actor (Diana Rigg), with a gang of suspects including hotel-keeper Maggie Smith, cuckolded husband Denis Quilley, camp journalist Roddy McDowall, theatrical producer James Mason and his domineering wife Sylvia Miles, and would-be gigolo Nicholas Clay and his mousy spouse Jane Birkin. Anthony Shaffer's script gives plenty of opportunity for humorous sequences, especially the cat-fights between Smith and Rigg, and the scene where Poirot, clad in a bathing-dress, attempts to have a morning swim. Whereas David Suchet in the television version tended to be low-key in his characterization, referring to his "little gray cells" and how they solved cases on more than one occasion, Ustinov turns in a flamboyant performance, full of little details: the sequence where he overhears Clay and Birkin arguing in their hotel room ends with a shot of Poirot twitching his mustache, as if he doesn't quite believe what they are saying (he is eventually proved right). The score has rightly been praised: John Lanchbery's arrangements of Cole Porter standards are both florid yet particularly appropriate for the film's bourgeois ambiance: the characters' entire lives are dedicated to pleasure rather than work. As Poirot observes, somewhat cynically, they resemble slabs of meat laid out in the sun to brown. Guy Hamilton's direction is both slick and very clear: unusually for most Christie adaptations, EVIL UNDER THE SUN ties up every single strand of its complicated plot, leaving viewers without too many questions to ask as to whodunit and why. Definitely one of the better versions of the great detective novelist's work, even if it departs quite significantly from the source-text.


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