Today we’ve got a very special guest here at DoubleFeaturePreachers. He’s my friend and a fellow movie lover, and his name is Ben Wishman. He is going to write a little bit about Murder on the Orient Express! Check it out - David
Thanks for the welcome David. I appreciate the warm welcome. This film was one which I did not have a great deal of positive or negative pretense. Having never read the Agatha Christie Novel nor ever having seen the original film from 1974, I was very interested in this murder mystery story. I myself am someone who enjoys a good drama/mystery movie that keeps you guessing throughout. This movie did just that and certainly keeps you on your toes to follow the evidence discovered on the train throughout the movie.
Murder takes place as the Orient Express is leaving Istanbul for England which a prestigious Belgian detective Hercule Poirot (played by Kenneth Branagh, the director) unforeseeably ends up on. The detective has an old friend who works for the expressway and was able to get him a last-minute ticket on the train of which he is also a passenger. The detective’s friend, while getting him a last-minute ticket for the train, notes that it seems to be unusually busy for this time of year. On board is a wealthy, yet shady art dealer, who, knowing the reputation of the Belgian detective, asks him if he would work as private security to protect him from the many men he believes to be after him. During the first night on the train, someone is murdered by a passenger who must still be on the train. Poirot is put in a position where he must work to find out who the murderer is as no one is more equipped than he given the situation that they are in. There are many pieces of evidence found on the train that potentially point to several fellow passengers as the murderer at any given point in the progression of the investigation. This keeps you questioning with Poirot who appears to be perplexed by what happened on the train that night.
The film was very well done in the amount of information given to the viewer at any one time. This keeps you looking for the next piece of information that you might get, leading you to your next idea of what may have happened or who it is that could be the murderer. At certain points during the movie you begin to question every passenger’s character and intentions. In comparing this movie to other murder/mysteries, I think that Murder on The Orient Express is nearly unparalleled by the sheer fact that this movie takes place almost entirely in one setting. I think a single setting can certainly put a few limitations on the filmmakers and present a few challenges. However, the filmmakers did not make this at all evident in this movie, as you hardly notice the setting while engrossed in the story and the mystery that you are so eagerly trying to unfold.
Throughout this movie the filming and camera angles were, in my opinion, very well done. These unique choice of camera angles gives you a great overview of what is going on in different areas of the train at different times during the story. These angles also allow you to look in on the events that took place in a way that draws you in and keeps you engaged as you discover more and more about what happened. The uniquely well-done filming and producing, coupled with the outstanding performances by many of the actors in this film allowed it to stand above many similar movies. This movie thoroughly impressed me and certainly ended with a bang as it keeps you wondering about the movie until nearly the very end. I would give this film an “A” for the acting and the overall storyline originally thought up by Agatha Christie in her 1934 novel.
Thanks for having me!