HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
mother!
God's Own Country
Unseen, The
Tonight She Comes
Chasing the Dragon
Into the Forest
Limehouse Golem, The
Frankenstein '80
Good Time
Bucket of Blood, A
Detroit
Hide and Seek
What Happened to Monday
River Wild, The
Veteran
Slumber Party '57
Juliette, or Key of Dreams
Summertime Killer
Sweet Virginia
Ben & Arthur
Your Name
Red Hot Shot, The
New World
Trick Baby
Weapons of Death
Second Best Secret Agent in the Whole Wide World, The
Kills on Wheels
Strait-Jacket
This Man is Dangerous
Burning Paradise
   
 
Newest Articles
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agn├Ęs: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
   
 
  Murder Most Foul The Play's The ThingBuy this film here.
Year: 1964
Director: George Pollock
Stars: Margaret Rutherford, Ron Moody, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, Andrew Cruickshank, Megs Jenkins, Dennis Price, Ralph Michael, James Bolam, Stringer Davis, Francesca Annis, Alison Seebohm, Terry Scott, Pauline Jameson, Maurice Good, Annette Kerr, Windsor Davies
Genre: Comedy, Thriller
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: A policeman (Terry Scott) is pounding the beat in this quiet English village when he walks over to the local pub, taps on the window, and is rewarded with a pint of beer. What he has not noticed is that at a nearby house, a silhouette can be seen in the window of a woman being strangled to death, but after he finishes his drink - and pays - the copper is walking back the way he came when he catches sight of a body strung up in the front room of that house. He rushes in to see a man apparently tying it up to make it look like a suicide, and banknotes scattered over the floor - it's surely an open and shut case, but one of the jurors has other ideas...

That is because one of the jurors is a very sceptical Miss Marple (Margaret Rutherford), who believes there's more to this than meets the eye, resulting in the need for a retrial because the jury cannot agree. Capitalising on this period between trials, she decides to do a spot of investigating of her own, and so begins another mystery to be solved by Agatha Christie's famous sleuth. Well, sort of, as Christie wasn't exactly keen on what the movies did to her characters, but cinema audiences certainly loved seeing Rutherford hustle and bustle about the place, proving herself the smartest person in the room but never being arrogant about it.

This was the third of the Miss Marple movies of this decade, directed as usual by George Pollock, and drew its inspiration from Christie's novel Mrs McGinty's Dead, which not only was not a comedy it wasn't even a Marple story, it was an Hercule Poirot one. But unless you're a diehard Dame Agatha obsessive, there shouldn't be too much to take offence to at this version, as these efforts were more aimed at Dame Margaret fans anyway, and she did shine in them in her indomitable fashion. To add a further layer of irony, her Marple here mixed with some thespians as she joined an acting troupe as her investigations had led her in that direction, so we got to see Rutherford pretending to be an actress.

She was an actress, of course, but here she was an actress pretending to be an amateur performer, making her audition with a rendition of The Shooting of Dan McGrew, a poem by Robert W. Service whose inappropriateness is something to behold, especially with the gravitas that Marple offers it. The reason she's hooking up to this company - it's not the recital that gives her access, it's the fact that she lets slip that she is of independent means and therefore might be able to put up some much-needed cash - is that she works out that the Mrs McGinty who was the victim was in fact a blackmailer, and had been putting pressure on one of the actors to pay up. So which one is the guilty party?

In each of these instalments there was a distinctive character actor to provide a foil to Rutherford, and this time around it was Ron Moody as the pretentious troupe leader and aspiring playwright. Although he's fine, the script doesn't offer him enough idiosyncrasies to emerge as the best of these roles, and too often he is seen to be a little on the meek side when faced with the strength of Miss Marple's will. It was nice to see him in this, however, as he was not out of place in the least, and more memorable than the other suspects who populated the theatre. The locations were a lot more claustrophobic, which did lend an airless mood to the film, but the contrast between real murder and the fictional kind that interests crime buffs was nicely handled, and naturally encapsulated in the Marple character, the ultimate crime buff herself. Music by Ron Goodwin, with that great theme once again making its presence felt.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2325 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Shrimpton
Lee Lopez
Jennifer Thomas
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
   

 

Last Updated: