The normally friendly village of Lymston is plagued by vile anonymous letters. When a mother of three takes her own life, following such a letter, Ms. Marple is not at all convinced things are as they seem.
A friend of Miss Marple's sees a woman being strangled in a passing train. When police cannot find a body and doubt the story, Miss Marple enlists professional housekeeper, Lucy Eyelesbarrow, to go undercover.
While on vacation at a resort hotel in the West Indies, Miss Marple correctly suspects that the apparently natural death of a retired British major is actually the work of a murderer planning yet another killing.
BBC Adaption of Agatha Christie's novel; in the small village of St. Mary Mead, Colonel and Mrs. Bantry, owners of the local manor Gossington Hall, are shocked when a young lady's body is found in their library. They call in the police who soon run up against a brick wall; only finding out that the body is that of a dancer in London who the Bantrys didn't even know. But how and why was her body left in the library? To find out the truth, the Bantrys call in the help of their good friend Miss Jane Marple.Written by
Lee Horton <Leeh@tcp.co.uk>
The ending was a total surprise. My guess as to the killer's identity was flat wrong. But, of course, once the explanation is given, the events make perfect sense. There are clues all over the place, but they're very subtle. Some are in the dialogue. If spoken words were taken at face value, we would know instantly who the villain is. Instead, we take these words only in the context of the discussion. Thus, we overlook their significance. This film is probably one of the better TV murder mysteries derived from an Agatha Christie novel.
Casting and acting are fine. As Miss Marple, Joan Hickson plays it low-key and deferential. Other actors are also a delight. Andrew Cruickshank as Conway Jefferson, Raymond Francis as Sir Henry Clithering, and Frederick Jaeger as Chief Constable Melchett enhance the overall quality of acting.
The plot does seem a tad strung out. The story doesn't really justify a two and a half-hour plot. Several sequences, especially in the first half, could have been shortened or deleted. I'm assuming the story takes place in the early 1950s, but the script doesn't really specify.
I like the spine-tingling suspense near the end. All we see of the killer is a shadowy figure and a pair of black-gloved hands. Marvelous! And Miss Marple sums up the entire story: "It's a mystery. But then we all are, aren't we? Even to ourselves, especially to ourselves".
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