When troubled war veteran Jerry Burton and his sister Joanna relocate to the quiet little village of Lymstock in order to allow Jerry to recuperate from injuries received in what he claims is a motorcycle accident, they are expecting nothing more than country sleepiness and tedium. Much to their surprise, however, they find themselves embroiled in the middle of scandal and secrets; someone is sending vicious poison-pen letters to the residents. A local dignitary has already taken his own life over the letters, and it's not long before local gossip Mona Symmington also commits suicide after receiving a letter. But when the letter-writer apparently resorts to murder, Jerry finds his curiosity stoked despite himself, and he's not the only one; Miss Jane Marple is also in Lymstock, and she's decided that it's long past time someone got to the bottom of this unpleasant business.Written by
The title of the film (and the novel it's based on) is, like that of many other works by Agatha Christie, a quotation of a piece of poetry. "The Moving Finger" are the first words of a well known work by the medieval Persian poet Omar Khayyam. See more »
Though the movie is set to happen in year 1952, one of the letter arriving to Symmington's before Mrs. Symmington's death bears a 1/3 stamp which was issued in 1958. See more »
I often find the most unlikely people doing the most surprising things. Don't you agree, Miss Marple?
On the contrary, Mr. Pye, I usually find the most likely people behaving exactly as I would have expected.
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As far as this series has gone, I liked "Murder is Announced", "Murder at the Vicarage" and in some ways "4.50 From Paddington" but was disappointed in "Sleeping Murder", "Nemesis", "Body in the Library" and especially "Sittaford Mystery". While not 100% perfect, "Moving Finger" is by far one of the better ITV Marple adaptations. While taking a few minor liberties, it does respect the book somewhat, and manages to be absorbing in terms of plot and stylish in terms of production values, as they were really delightful here. The acting is very, very good, Harry Enfield overdoes it just a tad as Symmington and I didn't care for Ken Russell very much as the vicar, but Frances DeLa Tour, Talullah Riley, Imogen Stubbs, Keith Allen and John Sessions all turn in solid work. Geraldine McEwan does give one of her better performances as Miss Marple, and as Joanna and Jerry Emilia Fox and James D'Arcy are appealing enough. The direction was decent and the pace is nice and skippy, but if I had any other complaints other than the occasional overacting of one or two members of the cast, the writers could have developed the script a tad. Other than that, this is a surprisingly good adaptation. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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