Death On The Nile (Mystery/2022/ Disney Hotstar)
Based on – Agatha Christie’s novel by the same name
Director- Kenneth Branagh
Cast – Kenneth Branagh, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Tom Bateman, Letitia Wright, Emma Mackay, Sophie Okonedo, Ali Fazal
A wedding party and a honeymoon cruise with dynamics as tense a bomb about to explode.
That the newly weds have trampled upon someone’s heart and faith seems to be at the centre of it all .
That the Bride is a filthy rich heiress probably adds to her fears and insecurity.
The initial part of the film provides ample time for guess work as to who will die.
The last part is left to Hercule Poirot’s superlative prowess to find the culprit.
For someone who loves watching period era, who is a hardcore mystery fan and who loves films with exotic setting, this film was a virtual treat. Add to it that I have been an avid Agatha Christie fan in childhood.
Though the peculiar traits of Hercule Poirot and his idiosyncrasies are somewhat faded in my memory owing to decades of gap when I read them last, but I loved refreshing them up. That the memories are faded helped me in a way because there was no clash or disappointment with Branagh’s Poirot. In fact I liked the softer side to his persona.
Actor Director Branagh takes sometime building up the premise and dynamics before the actual action starts taking place. But I personally did not mind that even a bit, so lost I was in the locations and setting. The wonderful cast and the small peeps given into the characters keep you occupied. While the dynamics are being portrayed, that gives you an opportunity to play Poirot in your mind. Lucky would be those Christie fans who do not remember this particular novel by now. The suspense would add to the pleasure.
Absolutely loved Sophie Okonedo for the oomph she oozes. Gal Gadot looked amazing and so did Emma Mackay. Armie Hammer did not look as dashing as I saw him last in Rebecca.Liked Tom Bateman a lot though this character was so different than how I saw him last in “ Behind the Eyes”. Ali Fazal holds fort in his little role and I was impressed with his accent.The entire cast was a pleasure to watch.
Contrary to some reviews, I actually liked the build up. The uncertainty and the intrigue keeps you totally engaged. In fact what I found slightly disappointing was the resolution of the case. There was something about the third act that made it seem hurried.
As a comparison, Murder on The Orient Express, Branagh’s first one of a planned three on Agathie Christie’s mysteries , was superior to this one.
But nevertheless it was thoroughly a pleasurable watch. Well.. actually, Egypt and the Cruise could have had a role in it.