Murder on the Orient Express

Way back in on November 13th my husband and I went to see “Murder on the Orient Express”.

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Somehow, I had managed to go my entire life without reading Agatha Christie’s novel or seeing any of the prior film adaptations, so I managed to go into the film both not knowing how died but also who did the killing. Since it was my first time following this story it was really fascinating to watch the plot unfold. Although the film is not an amazing piece of filmmaking it was entertaining from start to finish and isn’t that what we all want out of a who done it story?

Kenneth Branagh does a good job of directing and he keeps the suspense high. My real one bone to pick with the film is that there is an unnecessarily high use of CGI in the film. I don’t think that a film that takes place almost entirely on a train needs any CGI, let alone the large amount that is in this film.

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I found it very distracting and it really made me realize that I was watching the film in the year 2017 instead of 1934 (when the story takes place). I  am kind of baffled that a director that that I associate with Shakespeare would rely so heavily on CGI…I guess that’s what happens when you direct “Thor”.

This film is a true ensemble of acting. It is remarkable to see the fantastic powerhouse cast that Branagh has put together for this film. Overall, everybody gives good performances. The weak links are Johnny Depp and (I hate to say it) Branagh himself.

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I don’t think either one of them are bad, per se, but they have both been better and when you compare them to the other actors their performances seem a little one note. The strongest performance comes from Michelle Pfeiffer. She really knocks her role out of the park. Between this and her role in “Mother!” I think it’s safe to say La Pfeiffer is back!

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The film is still floating around in some theatres and I do think it is absolutely worth seeing. In fact, it is so good that I would be interested in seeing it again so that I could play the who done it game in reverse. I think that is the highest compliment you can pay to any murder mystery, that once you know how it ends you want to go back and do it all over again.

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Here is a description:

Justin Gomez and his sister, Terri, have never been close. Separated by nine years and distant in adulthood, Justin and Terri have little in common, except for the love of her three children. In the days before they embark on a road trip to visit the father that once abandoned them and their now deceased mother, both Terri and Justin are dealing with unexpected changes in their lives. Justin surprisingly realizes he might want more than a series of one night stands after a first date goes unexpectedly well. After a lifetime of being a strong type A personality, Terri is forced to confront the reality of the end of her marriage. As they hit the road, with Terri’s children in tow, they find themselves forced to rely on and confide in each other following a devastating event. Confronted with memories from the past and challenges from the present, Terri and Justin must dig deep and unearth the truth about themselves and their parents in order to build a new family based on their love for each other.

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2 thoughts on “Murder on the Orient Express

  1. I was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed this film, especially since I’ve never read the book (so was experiencing the tale for the first time). Great, talented cast and the visuals were sumptuous!

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