Director – Kenneth Branagh
FLICK IN A LIMERICK
A detective takes a train ride through a snowy summit
After a passenger is murdered the trip begins to plummet
It is a race against time to solve this violent crime
In this redundant Whodunnit
“Whatever people say there is right and there is wrong. There is no in between”
“Some men have a good look they can just keep their mouth shut and take home any prize they want”
“We must be better than the beast… now let’s go find this killer”
“I believe it takes a fracture of the soul to kill another human being”
“I am sleeping out here where I can see everyone and everyone can see me”
“A killer will never hesitate to kill again”
“There are no killers here just people with the opportunity to heal”
- The moustaches
- Black and white flashbacks
- Bread slice table pan
- One take following through conversation on train
(Kenneth Branagh, Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, Penelope Cruz, Judi Dench, Willem Dafoe, Josh Gad, Derek Jacobi)
This is a cast I really good and star-studded. It is just with so many characters they all kind of get lost in the shuffle. All of the suspects have their moment but we never get to see their characters develop.
Kenneth Branagh was great early on he had excellent mannerisms and facials. The best part about his performance was that it seemed as though he was ad libbing and improvising majority of his dialogue which seemed interesting. Johnny Depp was great here even in limited screen time. I think he so often gets the outlandish character roles that at times we forget how great of an actor he is when he is portraying a normal human being. Michelle Pfeifer was excellent and my favorite performance. She was very entertaining and gave this film life it desperately needed.
Poirot lines all of the passengers on the train under the tunnel to interrogate all of them. He then presents his theory that Ratchet was an evil man who collected a large ransom for the kidnapping and claiming a young girl. Each passenger had a connection to the child and all had a hand in murdering Ratchet in an act of revenge.
Famed detective Poirot with all his integrity takes way too long to come to the realization that Ratchet deserved his fate and was able to realize sometimes there are casualties in crime. Stylistically Murder On the Orient Express is beautiful. There is excellent camerawork displaying the many functions and occupations on the trainride. Also nice usage of pans, zooms and overhead shots. There are many themes explored such as class, sex and race that were showcased very candidly. From a story wise perception this film suffered from a dramatic twist in direction awkwardly at the point the train stopped in the movie. The opening sequences were fresh, humorous and entertaining. Borrowing from a film like Clue if you will. The latter portion of the movie continuously got less interesting and switched to a more dramatic and serious tone. The final reveal scene took too long. The problem with Whodunit’s is that after the initial murder the rest of the story is a search for the killer. This movie does not add any conflict or romance or something to keep the mouth wet during the duration of the film. Outside of the performances Michelle Pfiefer’s in particular who is still extremely hot by the way, there was nothing too memorable about this film. Blatantly you may doze off on this ride but at least you will have appealing imagery while you day dream.
– Caleb Harris
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