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Sparkling Cyanide (2003)

In this TV movie, a classic mystery is updated and relocated to a glamorous world of London socialites and secret agents, introducing two unique and compelling investigators and taking us through to the highest corridors of power.

Director:

Tristram Powell

Writers:

Laura Lamson (screenplay), Agatha Christie (from the novel by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Pauline Collins ... Dr. Catherine Kendall
Oliver Ford Davies ... Col. Geoffrey Reece
Kenneth Cranham ... George Barton
Jonathan Firth ... Mark Drake
Susan Hampshire ... Lucilla Drake
Clare Holman ... Alexandra Farraday
James Wilby ... Stephen Farraday
Lia Williams ... Ruth Lessing
Rachel Shelley ... Rosemary Barton
Justin Pierre Justin Pierre ... Carl 'Fizz' Fitzgerald
Joseph Scatley Joseph Scatley ... Sam Knight (as Joseph Scattley)
Richard Clifford ... Maitre D'
Chloe Howman Chloe Howman ... Iris Marle
Ruth Platt ... Rebecca Knight
Jack Fortune Jack Fortune ... Phillip McCain
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Storyline

In this TV movie, a classic mystery is updated and relocated to a glamorous world of London socialites and secret agents, introducing two unique and compelling investigators and taking us through to the highest corridors of power.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 October 2003 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Agatha Christie: Cianuro espumoso See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Company Pictures, Chorion See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Version of Poirot: The Yellow Iris (1993) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Tune in, turn on, switch off
20 May 2005 | by lucy-19See all my reviews

This Christie adaptation was flagged as "in a modern setting, with a contemporary twist". There was so much twist they forgot to tell the story, which is a good one. Characters were introduced briefly, with thumbnail descriptions in voice-over, instead of being allowed to show us who they were. Then the "contemporary, modern" angle was shoved in our faces. "And this is my wife, Alexandra, a high-flying barrister, you know, not like in the olden days when women didn't have jobs, and here's Rosemary's sister, who's a personal trainer to the stars and has a black footballer boyfriend, not like in the book which is old fashioned, twee, quaint and weedy and she's a debutante who possible works as a secretary." Instead of a dashing male detective we have two old buffers obviously based on Christie's characters Tommy and Tuppence - former secret service agents who are occasionally called out of retirement. Of course they have to use computers and mobile phones the second they are introduced, and get themselves offstage with "You shadow the husband, I'll go and DO SOME RESEARCH ON THE INTERNET, you know, that modern thingy that they didn't have when Christie wrote her books I mean in her day they probably sent messages by a man in a cleft stick and were hopelessly dull and oldfashioned and never never did anything interesting like having sex." Actually the original Christie story is teeming with adultery - read the book! Read the book! And then watch the enjoyable 1983 film with Anthony Andrews which has the sense to stick to Christie's story. Updating from the 50s to the 80s, and moving from England to America, makes perfect sense. But avoid the TV version with David Suchet, filmed as The Yellow Iris, which muffs the story badly, introducing an unnecessary trip to wartorn South America (!?) and not even showing the second dinner party (filling in time with an equally otiose "South American" dance rehearsal).


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