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Murder on the Orient Express (1974)

I watched this movie last night for the first time in years. It was better than I remembered.

I am a huge fan of Sidney Lumet films as is (he is an actors director). Dog Day Afternoon, Network, The Wiz, and The Verdict are all extremely different masterpieces that hold up to this day. Murder on the Orient Express is among his greats.

Albert Finney commands an all-star cast of Lauren Bacall, Martin Balsam, Ingrid Bergman, Jacqueline Bisset, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Sean Connery, Sir John Gielgud, Wendy Hiller, Anthony Perkins, Vanessa Redgrave, Rachel Roberts, Richard Widmark, and Michael York.

Finney's tour de force performance is what real acting is. Add in the likes of Gielgud, Bergman, and Bacall, and you can smell the "competition" between thespians and artistes. The forty minute denouement where Finney gives his legendary soliloquy to some of the greatest talent of his time is truly an actor honing in his craft.

From the overture to the legendary Orient Express pulling out of Istanbul station to the reconstruction of the murder, Richard Rodney Bennett's score is a masterpiece, too. I would pay good money to own this vinyl record.

The only flaw- Richard Widmark's death scene (not the stabbing scene, but the poison scene). I believe Widmark is the weakest actor out of the bunch. His "Acting" poisoned is almost comical, especially compared to the rest of the film.

A definitive 8/10.

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by Anonymousreply 43211 hours ago

Best murder mystery film ever: the cast, the score, the costumes and Finney is the best Poirot. Better than the Branaugh abortion.

by Anonymousreply 107/16/2021

R1 I just watched the Branagh version. It was nice to look at and a few performances were great, but it doesn’t hold a candle to this version.

by Anonymousreply 207/16/2021

Touch nothing!

by Anonymousreply 307/16/2021

Love the costumes. The scene in the station is a high fashion catwalk show with the shots of the train leaving the station as the highlight. But Albert Finney looks like a corpse in his costume.

by Anonymousreply 407/16/2021

I adore Albert Finney - he could do no wrong in my book. And what a cast!

He hated the costumes so much that he never wanted to resume his role.

by Anonymousreply 507/16/2021

What does it mean to be an "actor's director?"

by Anonymousreply 607/16/2021

It's been years since I last watched it. I remember finding Finney and Bergman annoying as fuck back then. Might need to revisit it and find out whether I feel differently about their performances now. When I saw the movie as a kid I thought Vanessa Redgrave winking at Lauren Bacall as they clinked glasses was the most stylish creature ever.

by Anonymousreply 707/16/2021

The opening sequence with the Daisy Ashford kidnapping & murder is one of the most beautifully accomplished sequences in Hollywood history. That black & white photography of Colonel Ashford and his wife and their servants around the crime scene, the terrifying editing, and that thundering music.

by Anonymousreply 807/16/2021

The Wiz is a "masterpiece"?! LMAO!!!!!

by Anonymousreply 907/16/2021

Spoiler Alert....






The reveal of Linda Arden is a hoot when you think of how Arden was supposed to be a great Shakespearean actress. When you think about who played Arden and try to imagine her in Shakespearean drama, the mind boggles. Of course she didn't look very convincing in the other role she played in the movie either.

by Anonymousreply 1007/16/2021

I must say in spite of its flaws and taking liberties both with Poirot's characterisation and the story, the Branagh version is much more exciting and entertaining than the old classic.

Albert Finney is dreadful in the role and Michelle Pfieffer is much better at conveying the glamour and eccentricities of Mrs Hubbard than the ever-limited Lauren Bacall who comes across a haughty and unsympathetic.

Also, what was so special about Ingrid Bergman's performance that she won an Oscar for it?

by Anonymousreply 1107/16/2021

Who wrote that Viennese-schmaltzy musical score? A mighty, masculine steam engine roars across the screen to a accompaniment of syncopated, twiddly effeminate waltz?

by Anonymousreply 1207/16/2021

I vastly preferred Evil Under the Sun. Ustinov didn't have prosthesis's all over his face which was good because one could believe he would have been just as smart as Poirot in real life. Also fantastic visuals (Not a train carriage for the whole movie), top cast, script and score by....everyone should know.

by Anonymousreply 1307/16/2021

Were Bergman and Ball scratching each others' eyes out? After all, both claimed a special relationship with Bogart.

by Anonymousreply 1407/16/2021

[quote] What does it mean to be an "actor's director?"

R6 It means he hired quality actors— lots of British actors.

This film needs actors with star power to keep the audience's interest because we're trapped inside train carriages for almost 2 hours.

Of course, there were some superb performers (like Bergman and Redgrave) wasted in roles they could have performed in their sleep.

by Anonymousreply 1507/16/2021

Good film and I was surprised when I looked it up on IMDB that it wasn't Best Picture nominee. The Academy actually nominated the dreadful-but- profitable The Towering Inferno instead of MOTOE!

Lumet had a remarkable and varied career: 12 Angry Men, Dog Day Afternoon, Prince of the City, The Hill , Fail Safe, The Verdict. Network, , The Group, Serpico, The Pawnbroker, , Running on Empty. The Morning After, Garbo Talks,, Lovin' Molly and a surprising number of stage adaptations: Child's Play, Deathtrap, Long Days Journey Into Night, The Wiz, Equus, A View from the Bridge, The Seal Gull, The Fugitive Kind and The Last of the Mobile Hotshots from Williams "The Seven Descents of Myrtle"

by Anonymousreply 1607/16/2021

Bisset looks gorgeous in this.

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by Anonymousreply 1707/16/2021

R11 The Oscar was given to Ingrid because she's Ingrid and perfectly good in the film, but it's hardly my idea of an Oscar worthy performance.

by Anonymousreply 1807/16/2021

Diane Ladd at R18, I was the one who got truly screwed over. By the way can someone explain how the film I appeared in and my performance in it got nominated in two different years? Ingrid herself said that she thought I deserved the Oscar.

by Anonymousreply 1907/16/2021

Gorgeous film and I love it. I watch it at least once a year. i thought it was a great Agatha Christie adaptation. Albert Finney seems to get a lot of criticism for his portrayal as Hercule Poirot, but I thought he was brilliant. Jacqueline Bisset is incredibly gorgeous in this. Sean Connery and Vanessa Redgrave are an interesting pairing as a clandestine couple. Love this movie.

by Anonymousreply 2007/17/2021

The 1974 version is a bazillion times better that the new one, better performances, story taken more seriously, much better handling of the finale. Fucking Branagh wanted to turn it into a personal triumph for Poirot, and the ending that Christie wrote is better and more surprising.

Bacall made the most of her role, IMHO, by the end, she's probably winning the grand acting tournament going on with all the big names.

by Anonymousreply 2107/17/2021

Ingrid's Oscar win, where she gave a gracious speech, noting that Valentina Cortese's performance was, basically, better than hers, and that she was sorry that she won, and not Valentina.

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by Anonymousreply 2207/17/2021

The Wiz was Lumet vomiting up on the screen. He took a joyful stage musical and made it dark and shitty

by Anonymousreply 2307/17/2021

The intro sequence is indeed brilliant and spooky, and sets the mood for the whole film. Despite the clothes and distractions you keep remembering a child’s horrible death is at the center of the movie.

The recent version loses that completely, trying for laughs and action sequences, all due to Kenneth Blargh’s fault (and vanity). Michelle Pfeiffer is great in this (much better than Bacall) but the movie does not allow her to shine.

Bergman’s interrogation scene is clever and very well acted. But the best thing about it is it caused one of the greatest, more generous acceptance speeches ever.

by Anonymousreply 2407/17/2021

[quote] Were Bergman and Ball scratching each others' eyes out? After all, both claimed a special relationship with Bogart.

Ball would have been a very different Mrs Hubbard. Probably a lot more convincing than Bacall as that type of character, but likely not as who Mrs Hubbard really was.

by Anonymousreply 2507/17/2021

R10 I am a big Shakespeare fan. I watched the RSC version of Macbeth with Ian McKellen and Judi Dench this last week (It is free on Youtube).

I loved how Poirot figured out who was Arden and the Macbeth hints throughout, "thank you for playing your role," "why did you bring these daggers from the place?!" Little things like this is what the Branagh version lacked.

The Branagh version seemed to rush the ending and the denouement was lackluster and overdramatic.

by Anonymousreply 2607/17/2021

I loved the scenes with Princess Dragomiroff and her butch German maid.

I named my yorkie Princess Dragomiroff.

by Anonymousreply 2707/17/2021

It's always nice to win an Oscar.

by Anonymousreply 2807/17/2021

What about Tony Perkins, serving Norman Bates realness?

by Anonymousreply 2907/17/2021

I can't even imagine the wonderfulness of watching this film if I hadn't read the book years before and knew the ending.

It really is Christie's cleverest mystery.

by Anonymousreply 3007/17/2021

cunt's, all of them

by Anonymousreply 3107/17/2021

Things I love about Lumet’s version: Gielgud’s pronunciation of “fracas”; Roberts’ “Natalya, mein Herr”; the interrogation scenes; Redgrave’s sly smile throughout, where you can see that she thinks it’s all a high camp hoot; Bennett’s amazing score (almost as good as “Nicholas & Alexandra”); the look of sadness on Bacall’s face when she’s not being a loudmouth; Finney’s remarkable characterization which only seems over the top when compared to later iterations but at the time matched many viewers’ mental image of Poirot; George Coulouris still being cast; Jean-Pierre Cassel’s language skills and (upon recently watching for the 50th time) his truly affecting performance.

Branagh’s murder scene reenactment was beautifully filmed and scored.

by Anonymousreply 3207/17/2021

“ Were Bergman and Ball scratching each others' eyes out?”

R14, I talked her out of that role

by Anonymousreply 3307/17/2021

Produced by John Brabourne, 7th Baron Brabourne, husband of Countess Mountbatten of Burma (Prince Philip’s cousin), son of Doreen who was killed in the bombing of Dickie Mountbatten’s boat.

by Anonymousreply 3407/17/2021

I don't know OP, I could never watch it, and I'm a big AC fan. It's so stale and dusty, thay all look like madame tussaud's figures. I think the original Death on the Nile is 100000000000 X more entertaining

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by Anonymousreply 3507/17/2021

Hasn't this movie been cancelled yet?

by Anonymousreply 3607/17/2021

R36 this movies were made at a time when it was admitted that some people were white, especially in the british upperclass of the early 20th century

by Anonymousreply 3707/17/2021

Oh dearing meself so hard right now

by Anonymousreply 3807/17/2021

Tony Walton (Production and Costume Designer of the film) told me they achieved the frosty winter air seen when characters looked out of the train windows by simply having a technician blow cigarette smoke into view.

by Anonymousreply 3907/17/2021

[Quote] Jean-Pierre Cassel’s language skills and (upon recently watching for the 50th time) his truly affecting performance.

First time I saw it, I burst into tears when Cassel breaks down during the denouement. He brilliantly underplays until that moment and it's shattering.

by Anonymousreply 4007/17/2021

Jessie wants to be lezzie / Lucy’s pussy is juicy

by Anonymousreply 4107/17/2021

The costumes are just fantastic in the 1974 version, much less so in the lackluster remake. I mean, look at Bissett's outfit! It's to die for!

I read or heard an interview with the costume designer, who said that all the clothes were deliberately made slightly more fabulous than they would have been in real life - nothing is drab or worn, even though some of the characters weren't wealthy. The designer wanted to present a fantasy of 1930s fashion, one that was very period, but which didn't involve someone like the Perkins character wear a suit that was 5-10 years old, and which had been worn every working day. Men would have one good wood suit in those days and wear it continuously for years, but not in this movie.

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by Anonymousreply 4207/17/2021

What R9 said.

OP, if you believe that THE WIZ is good, let alone a masterpiece, it's time to seek medication.

by Anonymousreply 4307/17/2021

[quote]R42 The costumes are just fantastic in the 1974 version... I mean, look at Bissett's outfit! It's to die for!

I read a long interview with Tony Walton in which he said the fabric for that particular dress never arrived. He had an assistant who knew how to stamp pattern on fabric (I seriously think it involved using a potato) and they adjusted a different fabric in a rush.

It doesn’t read in most pics, but there’s a subtle dotted illusion created in a cream color on the blue. It’s the kind of detail that creates texture in closer shots.

by Anonymousreply 4407/17/2021

You can just barely see it here, in the shadow under her arm.

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by Anonymousreply 4507/17/2021

OP - I was 13 when Murder on the Orient Express came out - and I made my dad take me to see it (maybe a hint of a young gayling???) I have one of the original movie posters and I have the vinyl soundtrack (which I got for my birthday...) Jealous? :)

by Anonymousreply 4607/17/2021

R19 You were in a foreign-language film.

by Anonymousreply 4707/17/2021

As great as Tony Walton's costumes for ...Orient Express are, they don't hold a candle to Anthony Powell's for Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun.

by Anonymousreply 4807/17/2021

Evil Under the Sun has 80s hairstyles and costuming. Not so glamorous.

by Anonymousreply 4907/17/2021

r49, if you think Lauren Bacall's Orient hairdo is remotely 1934, you're very wrong.

by Anonymousreply 5007/17/2021

Girls, [italic]girls,[/italic] [bold]GIRLS! [/bold]

You're letting your prissy pedantry regarding period costumes and hairstyles tear you apart!

by Anonymousreply 5107/17/2021


by Anonymousreply 5207/17/2021

I think the last time an "And?" cowed me or anyone I know was all the way back in elementary school, r51.

Try a different tactic. Your prissy imperiousness is no more intimidating than your prissy pedantry.

by Anonymousreply 5307/17/2021

R16 one of Lumet's best movies his the unfairly forgotten THAT KIND OF WOMAN with a magnificent Tab Hunter, shutting down all critics about his talent and an (as per usual) equally splendid Loren. Needs to be rediscovered and celebrated ASAP

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by Anonymousreply 5407/17/2021

Very funny scene: Poirot having a fit in a fine dining restaurant, ripping up the menu in front of the exasperated wait staff.

by Anonymousreply 5507/17/2021

My favorite Sidney Lumet movie is The Fugitive Kind (1960) a wild Tennessee Williams melodrama co-starring Marlon Brando and Anna Magnani, also with Joanne Woodward and Maureen Stapleton. It's a campfest for the ages! I picked it up from a video store during the 20" snow storm in NYC in 1996.


by Anonymousreply 5607/17/2021

I remember the elegant cafe orchestra of the train station playing "On the Good Ship Lollipop," firmly setting the period as 1934.

by Anonymousreply 5707/17/2021

Do any such luxurious train lines still exist?

by Anonymousreply 5807/17/2021

The Orient Express still exists, though I'm sure it's not what it used to be. Google it!

by Anonymousreply 5907/17/2021

What is the other tune in that scene, r47? Poirot later hums the tune as he prepares his elaborate grooming ritual before bed.

by Anonymousreply 6007/17/2021

My pedantry is not prissy!

by Anonymousreply 6107/17/2021

My favorite is 2010 tv version with David Suchet.

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by Anonymousreply 6207/17/2021

"As great as Tony Walton's costumes for ...Orient Express are, they don't hold a candle to Anthony Powell's for Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun."

But "MotOE" came first! Which is actually a big deal, because sumptuous period costumes were far from common in 1974. Most period films had costumes that were more sixties or seventies than the period the film was supposed to be in, but this movie looked very 1934 and started a trend of more accurate costuming in movies.

I just want to give a little praise to Wendy Hiller's outfits, which look more 1910 than 1934, which is totally in character for a bereaved old lady who lives in the past.

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by Anonymousreply 6307/17/2021

^^ I am terrified the princess will become my avatar some day!

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by Anonymousreply 6407/17/2021

Wendy Hiller was lovely in Pygmalion. You just fall in love with her.

by Anonymousreply 6507/17/2021

Wendy Hiller was also quite lovely as Burt Lancaster's sex-partner in that truly AWFUL Hollywood version of Terence Rattigan's 'Separate Tables'.

by Anonymousreply 6607/17/2021

I love Hiller's facial expressions when Poirot rattles off her "lies and evasions."

by Anonymousreply 6707/17/2021

Lumet originally offered Bergman the role of the Princess Dragomirov, but she asked for the part she eventually played. (Wendy Hiller is fabulous as the Princess, but it's fun to picture what the Bergman version might have been like.) The very memorable way in which it was shot surely helps account for her surprising Oscar win.

I normally loathe Bacall, but I think she's almost ideal here. "Mrs. Hubbard" is SUPPOSED to be loud and unsympathetic, and Bacall delivers that with gusto; once her true identity is revealed, there's not much screen time left (and almost no dialogue) for her, so she gets away with it (so to speak).

To me this is hands-down the best of the big-screen Christies -- particularly in its handling of what brings the others to a screeching halt, the inevitable very looooooong explanation by Poirot. Lumet's direction and Finney's performance far surpass the way this part of a Christie novel is handled in DEATH ON THE NILE and EVIL UNDER THE SUN.

by Anonymousreply 6807/17/2021

Ball would have insisted her closeups be filmed through a snowbank.

by Anonymousreply 6907/17/2021

R68 I still find DOTN lighter, funnier and more entertaining. And stunning to the eye and ear

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by Anonymousreply 7007/17/2021

[quote]cunt's, all of them

Oh, dear.

by Anonymousreply 7107/17/2021


I don't even know where to start with that one.

by Anonymousreply 7207/17/2021

The opening sequence that describes the kidnapping, the arrival at the train station, and the ending when they can finally drop their masks and line up to meet the family…all such great scenes.

I’m not a fan of the Finney casting. Poirot may have been rotund but he was very light on his feet (he was vain about his small feet) whereas Finney lumbered around.

by Anonymousreply 7307/17/2021

[quote] The very memorable way in which it was shot surely helps account for her surprising Oscar win.

R86 I'm not sure what you're suggesting here.

She was always shown sitting; the camera looked down upon her; she looked subservient as she mewled about her brown babies?

by Anonymousreply 7407/17/2021

"I normally loathe Bacall, but I think she's almost ideal here. "Mrs. Hubbard" is SUPPOSED to be loud and unsympathetic, and Bacall delivers that with gusto; once her true identity is revealed, there's not much screen time left (and almost no dialogue) for her, so she gets away with it (so to speak)."

She was fabulous in the finale! Yes, she was supposed to be annoying and obnoxious for much of the film, but at the end, her true nature is revealed, and you see that she's so steely and determined that even Poirot backs down. And she gave hints earlier in the film, there's this moment at the train station where she stops and gives Poirot a strange, cold look... and the first time you see the film you think nothing of it. The second time, you realize that she's realizing that she has a problem, and is making up her mind regardless of opposition from the greatest detective in the world.

Yeah, she really aced the role.

by Anonymousreply 7507/17/2021

I want to watch it now R75

by Anonymousreply 7607/17/2021

I love Dame Wendy too. She was the third choice for the role, after Marlene Dietrich turned it down, and Ingrid Bergman said she would rather play the Swedish nurse than the princess.

by Anonymousreply 7707/17/2021

R68 and R75 I believe Bacall in this movie more than I did Pfeiffer in the remake.

I believe Bacall could have been America’s greatest tragic actress, too. After she is revealed, she’s a different person.

by Anonymousreply 7807/17/2021

oh but then if she was a famous actress, how come Poirot doesn't knoxw her when he sees her ?

by Anonymousreply 7907/17/2021

Let’s just take a moment to appreciate Sir John Gielgud in this.

He doesn’t want to talk to the loud Italian and American. All he wants to do is read after a long day. Then he plunges that dagger super freaking hard into Rachett.

by Anonymousreply 8007/17/2021

R79 Poirot DOES recognize her.

During lunch when Bianchi leaves she asks what’s wrong with him. Poirot replies “In the divine words of Greta Garbo ‘he just wants to be alone.’ “

After her interrogation, he thanks her for “playing her part.” You can see her face tighten, too.

When she brings the bloody knife to him, he asks “why did you bring the dagger from the place?” This is a Lady Macbeth quote. Poirot saw her twice as Lady Macbeth.

by Anonymousreply 8107/17/2021

She's a different person, and one who comes across as so incredibly formidable, you can actually believe she did what the character's done!

That's the problem with the damn remake, Brannaugh wanted the finale to be a victory for Poirot, so he had the mastermind crumble before his eyes, and it just doesn't work. It's much more believable that someone who'd do all that would be terrifyingly unstoppable, years of scheming and masses of willpower have gone into the murder plot, this is someone who'd never stop no matter how many obstacles pop into the path of success, someone who'd fucking stare down Poirot during the denoument and know he was going to be the one to back down. She was well cast, very well cast.

by Anonymousreply 8207/17/2021

My favorite Rachel Roberts moment in this movie (which is thus my favorite moment in the entire movie) is her contented smirk when Poirot asks if she is a good cook. "All my ladies haff said so!"

Wendy Hiller is beyond hilarious in this movie as the Princess Dragomiroff: "She vas the grrrrreatest trrrrrragic actrrrrress of herrrrr generrrrration!"

by Anonymousreply 8307/17/2021

The divine designer Anthony Powell dressed Maggie Smith in Travels with My Aunt (1972), for which he won the Academy Award, and for years after Smith refused to be dressed by anyone else and made it part of her film contracts. That's how he came to design Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun and such later projects as Sunset Boulevard onstage.

I had forgotten that Julie Andrews' first lavender marriage partner Tony Walton had designed Express but he did a lot of film, theater and ballet work that played New York in the 1970s and was a huge favorite of mine too.

by Anonymousreply 8407/17/2021

Who here has had Tony Walton?

by Anonymousreply 8507/17/2021

[quote]Who here has had Tony Walton?

Count me in that club.

by Anonymousreply 8607/17/2021

Maggie Smith did not insist that she be dressed by Anthony Powell and Anthony Powell only after Travels with My Aunt, [R84]. I am certain Anthony Powell would be quite surprised to learn he was the costume designer on Clash of the Titans or California Suite or Murder by Death, because he wasn't. In fact, the only other times he designed costumes for Maggie Smith after Travels with My Aunt were the two Agatha Christie adaptations -- and Maggie Smith played a frump in both.

by Anonymousreply 8707/17/2021

[quote] Tony Walton

I love this picture of the earnest bride and groom.

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by Anonymousreply 8807/17/2021

So Powell never dressed Smith again? Not in film nor onstage? Not in Private Lives in London nor in New York?

But, yes, I surrender. I overstated my case. I apologize.

by Anonymousreply 8907/17/2021

That's priceless, r88. They both look like they're trying to maintain their dignity while on their way to a death squad. Thanks.

by Anonymousreply 9007/17/2021

[quote] I had forgotten that Julie Andrews' first lavender marriage partner Tony Walton had designed Express

Wait a minute, what? TW is gay?

by Anonymousreply 9107/17/2021

Yes, R91, and I know DL elders have had him!!! Spill it, guys!

by Anonymousreply 9207/17/2021

Oh, that's actually sweet r88. He looks like he's leaning in on her and holding her hand tight to help and support her. I always heard they were great friends both before and after the marriage.

by Anonymousreply 9307/17/2021

Red Sails In The Sunset

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by Anonymousreply 9407/17/2021

R26, I used to show that version of "Macbeth" when I taught.

I am a major AC fan since 1957 and "Witness For the Prosecution." Have seen the London "The Mousetrap." I've always placed "MotOE" among Christie's Top 10.

But I was never interested in seeing any movie version.

However, the reviews here plus the mentioned allusions to "Macbeth" have motivated me to watch the Finney version.

by Anonymousreply 9507/17/2021

I think I'm the only person on DL who liked Lauren Bacall?

by Anonymousreply 9607/17/2021

I liked listening to Bacall's interviews, R96. Her gorgeous (cultivated) voice, the affected speech and the persona were all manufactured but she always came off as bright, interesting, intelligent, sharp and articulate. When she wasn't talking about Bogie the woman could be a good storyteller. I enjoyed reading her memoirs. Her raging cuntiness notwithstanding I thought she would have been more fun to talk to than her friend Kate Hepburn.

by Anonymousreply 9707/17/2021

i loved her voice too

by Anonymousreply 9807/17/2021

I had never seen the movie, but this thread enticed me to watch the 1974 and THEN the 2017 version. The old one was great for the most part if a bit campy but that's what makes these Christie movies fun.

The 2017 managed to completely nullify all the glamour the 1974 version oozed out. Yes it had beautiful panoramic vistas of old cities and nature alike but you can have that in any movie. Someone mentioned upthread how the beginning of the movie was a "catwalk" of 1930's fashion introducing each character. They totally removed that this time around so now there's no spotlight on the characters or the clothes! A missed opportunity to really showcase the glamour and opulence of the period.

I also usually like Michelle Pfeiffer but the original actress played the role better. I mean, none of actors who played Americans could even bother with a mid-atlantic aristocratic accent that would have totally fit into the period. They sound like they're speaking from 2021. The newer film just seems too modern.

by Anonymousreply 9907/17/2021

Kenneth Branagh betrays no understanding whatsoever of what makes Christie's writing popular.

by Anonymousreply 10007/17/2021

[quote]Do any such luxurious train lines still exist?

Check out this one, R58.

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by Anonymousreply 101Last Sunday at 12:03 AM

I hate this new one. The old Christie films are actually filmed in such a way that it feels like a puzzle the audience can try to piece together. The new one feels way too linear.

You also only get to see a thin veneer of all the other characters where in the old one they were at least given a personality and some idiosyncrasies.

by Anonymousreply 102Last Sunday at 12:19 AM

Why did they add a racism component to the new one? That wasn't in the old one at all that I recall.

by Anonymousreply 103Last Sunday at 12:21 AM

[quote] The divine designer Anthony Powell dressed Maggie Smith in Travels with My Aunt (1972), for which he won the Academy Award, and for years after Smith refused to be dressed by anyone else


by Anonymousreply 104Last Sunday at 2:45 AM

R103, because a person of color (read, Black) character needs to be shoehorned into every movie these days and we then need to be lectured about the terrible discrimination they faces at the time. Never mind the big hole in the logic of the plot when we are shown black doctors, aristocrats, businesspeople and fashionable socialites in the Europe of that period and also told that the racism and discrimination of the period kept them in grinding poverty.

by Anonymousreply 105Last Sunday at 2:49 AM

cue screams of SJWs and white resident fraus R105

by Anonymousreply 106Last Sunday at 2:55 AM

I remember 30years ago, (I was a teenager) seeing a production of HAMLET in Paris, directed by PETER BROOK who's an obscure culty english director ,whose claim to fame is the illl fated production of Macbeth with Vivien Leigh and her then husband in Stratford in 1955. His daughter married the then french gay minister of culture's son or something, so he was given a life pension and a theatre in Paris or something like that. He was considered very "avant garde" . Hamlet was black of course. There was not castle, nothing, no set, no prop, just a big carpet figuring Elsinore. The black prince of Denmark went on and on about his ancestors as I , and a few others, where walking along the alleys, heading for the exit. I know it's ART , and I felt sorry for the guy, but it didn't provoke thoughts, just immense boredom = imagination killer

by Anonymousreply 107Last Sunday at 3:06 AM

[quote] Why did they add a racism component to the new one?

Because vile Branagh was quoted as saying he wanted a "Badass Agatha Christie"— which is a vile oxymoron.

by Anonymousreply 108Last Sunday at 3:08 AM

I didn't see the entire piece of shit, but I lost any kind of respect I still had for Branagh (= he's aging well, I'd hit that) when I watched the ending. They told me Michelle was oscar great (wasn't...again). I couldn't believe how bad and out of character B. was. Did he even READ 1 POIROT? and he started SHOUTING. WTF?

by Anonymousreply 109Last Sunday at 3:27 AM

acting IS shouting

by Anonymousreply 110Last Sunday at 3:32 AM

Yes, ya gotta SHOUT to act!

by Anonymousreply 111Last Sunday at 3:40 AM

I don't understand how Rachel Roberts could actually learn her lines and hit her marks... the human body is incredibly resilient

by Anonymousreply 112Last Sunday at 3:46 AM

Is it DL day in the retirement home today, Mee Maw Roberts at R110? Maybe you misunderstood what the maid told you, Mee Maw Julia. She told you to go to Dat Lounge, not post on DL.

by Anonymousreply 113Last Sunday at 3:47 AM

R113 I know, Agatha Christie usually attracts younger crowds

by Anonymousreply 114Last Sunday at 3:49 AM

R60 -- It's "Red Sails in the Sunset." I recognized the tune but wouldn't have known the title but the closed captioning was on and it had it. Confirmed on the IMDB site.

by Anonymousreply 115Last Sunday at 3:50 AM

Tab Hunter's hit "red sails in the sunset " ?

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by Anonymousreply 116Last Sunday at 3:51 AM

R100, That's how I regard both the David Walliam and the Francesca Annis versions of the Tommy and Tuppence stories. Very disappointing tones of silliness and farce.

by Anonymousreply 117Last Sunday at 5:17 AM

it's similar thing with the ITV/Granada productions of the Miss Marple stories (and to a lesser extent with some of the later Poirots), they have a ridiculous cartoonish vibe and look - I remember the BBC versions of the stories with Joan Hickson being so much more subtle, grounded, and therefore affecting.

by Anonymousreply 118Last Sunday at 5:34 AM

108, I loathe how the word "badass" has entered common usage in relation to female characters (and now writers), so patronising, and usually a good clue to how insipid the material is going to be.

by Anonymousreply 119Last Sunday at 5:44 AM

The only thing that could have made Murder on the Orient Express 1974 more perfect would have been Peter Ustinov in the Poirot role. I agree that Finney was fine, but Ustinov embodied the character the way nobody did until David Suchet came along. That said, Suchet's MotOE is unbearably grim. I prefer the slight campiness of the 74 version.

by Anonymousreply 120Last Sunday at 6:58 AM

Have any of you Agatha Christie fans seen Agatha (1979)? I saw it when it first came out and thought it was pretty good - it's based on her disappearance in 1926, with Vanessa Redgrave as AC. Timothy Dalton as her husband and Dustin Hoffman as an American journalist on Christie's trail.

Hoffman brought the project to the First Artists company in which he was a partner with Paul Newman, Sidney Poitier, Barbra Streisand, and Steve McQueen for a while. Agatha, and the other one, Straight Time (1978), were two of Hoffman's best performances, well acted without the usual ham.

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by Anonymousreply 121Last Sunday at 10:00 AM

I loved the way they played up the height differential, r121.

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by Anonymousreply 122Last Sunday at 10:18 AM

R107, Orson Welles had staged an all-black cast of Macbeth decades earlier. Peter Brook's Hamlet with Adrian Lester was in 2001; by then, the avant garde part of the play you were seeing would have been the lack of sets that Brook was by then well known for, and the severe editing Brook had made to the play, not the color of the skin of the actors. Lester was widely regarded as a fine Hamlet and the problems with the production had nothing to do with him or with black actors in general.

But since your post was about hijacking this thread and turning into a bunch of racist crap, I guess it doesn't matter whether what you said actually made sense or not.

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by Anonymousreply 123Last Sunday at 10:52 AM

The costumes of the 1974 version, while evoking the period, had none of the authenticity seen in those of THE LEOPARD by Danilo Donati and all of Shirley Russell's films for her husband such as WOMEN IN LOVE, THE MUSIC LOVERS and THE BOYFRIEND. All of these films preceded MotOE by a few years.

Know your costume film history.

by Anonymousreply 124Last Sunday at 2:41 PM

I make no claims to being a costume/fashion expert but I'll say the the 1974 version does evoke the idea of the 1930s when I see them. Like that one glittery garb Hubbard wears for the second half of the movie that has the sharp angles really reminds me of art deco.

The 2017 version has clothing that looks too much like modern clothing. If this was set in modern times with the same clothing, I could believe it. There's even a scene where Pfeiffer's character is sitting at the swanky bar on the train with sneakers? I mean really? Would a woman of her stature in that time period wear sneakers in that setting?

by Anonymousreply 125Last Sunday at 2:50 PM

R96, I love Bacall, although she seems like she was a nightmare offstage.

The best deductive moment in the film comes where Bacall's Mrs. Hubbard dumps a whole bunch of crap onto the table out of her pocketbook - basically a ton of make-up. Poirot looks horrified and it reads as a gag about how men can't believe how much stuff women lug around.

Here's the thing - the only woman who would have had that much make-up in her possession back then would have been a call girl - or an actress. Mrs. Hubbard is obviously not a call girl - so this is the final tip to Finney that Bacall doesn't just greatly resemble a famous actress - she IS the famous actress.

The look she gives Pierre at the the very end as he stumbles weeping to his seat is remarkable - it conveys a depth of sympathy you'd think a second's glance simply couldn't hold.

Love Michele but Bacall's Mrs. Hubbard would have broken Michelle's weepy bitch in half, chucked the pieces overboard and forgotten she'd done so by martini #5.

A friend of mine once performed a gag skit where he, as Poirot, and another chap as his companion on the train are show walking towards the camera down the railroad tracks. As they get nearer, it is obvious they have both been badly beaten. The companion turns to Poirot and mumbles "The next time you find out that everyone on a train is a killer except for you and me, wait until we are at a station to tell them you know this."

by Anonymousreply 126Last Sunday at 2:53 PM

For a movie that is causing so much comment and fond memories, it's a bit stunning to realize that Bisset, Redgrave, and York are the last three of the 20 actors still alive.

by Anonymousreply 127Last Sunday at 2:55 PM

Not if you consider the film was shot in 1974, r127.

by Anonymousreply 128Last Sunday at 3:01 PM

Really happy to see this thread--I love, love, LOVE the 1974 version and watch it once a year. I'm an actor, and whenever I feel discouraged and want to quit, I watch Finney's performance and it gives me a lift. It's a heroic performance in my opinion. He was in his 30s at the time! Incredible transformation--vocal work, physical work, so forth.

There was a featurette on the original DVD and I recall Lumet saying he had fun mixing great stage actors with great film actors. I think that tension is present throughout and it does throw me at times; Perkins is the weakest of the bunch, doing warmed-over Norman Bates. Others are sort of doing caricatures of themselves (Bacall, Gielgud), but then you get Connery, Hiller, Roberts, Cassel, all of whom are really magnificent.

Bergman is really great in a small role. Not sure it deserved an Oscar, but that's neither here nor there. Notice in the Bergman interrogation scene there is NO CUT and only ONE camera movement, so highly impactful. Lumet was so fucking great--he knew just what to do and when to do it. And I love how Finney is with Bergman in that scene, he's just right with her, very gentle, supportive. What a great scene partner he was to her.

And I agree that opening montage is unbelievably good. When I was a boy and saw it for the first time, that sequence scared the hell out of me.

I also like that opening Istanbul sequence--kind of forgotten in the other more flashy scenes, but it's really cool. Amazingly photographed.

Agree that Widmark is weak, dumb, cartoony.

by Anonymousreply 129Last Sunday at 3:42 PM

Ooooh miss embroidered asshole is having a meltdown @ R123 ! how virtuous of you, precious pearlina, to signal that I didn't aknowledge the right White Savior, in his superior understanding of humanity arts and politics . Orson Welles saved the black people, not Peter Brook, by casting Black people as medieval european aristocrats. Don't clutch your pearls too hard because of me, please dear miss pisspot R123. I thought that Peter brook had at least one original idea. I am so sorry I " hijacked this thread and turned into a bunch of racist crap,". Can you still shit through that tiny golden asshole of yours ? it's not like there were 20 posts already mocking the like of you, Oh sorry, don't cry please. You're not the most ridiculous stuck-from-the-ass poster of the day, I'm sure miss. Do you want me to stick that laced parasol out of your precious shithole (no I didn't mean your mouth) so that you can fart ? you'll be more comfortable

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by Anonymousreply 130Last Sunday at 3:49 PM

Anthony Perkins could only do Norman Bates, even IRL

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by Anonymousreply 131Last Sunday at 4:04 PM

R74, watch Bergman's Big Scene again. First of all, it's shot in 1 unbroken take. Second, the gradual motion of the camera and the eventual movement of Poirot create a subtle, wonderful claustrophobic effect around Bergman's character. None of the other interrogations is shot in this manner.

by Anonymousreply 132Last Sunday at 4:29 PM

I should've won that fucking Oscar!

by Anonymousreply 133Last Sunday at 6:10 PM

[quote]There's even a scene where Pfeiffer's character is sitting at the swanky bar on the train with sneakers?

Are you sure that wasn't an editing error? Or maybe they just looked like sneakers but were boat shoes or something similar?

The designer talks about how they "cheated" on shoes because in 80% of the scenes they wouldn't even show, so they used less expensive shoes to stretch the budget.

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by Anonymousreply 134Last Sunday at 6:16 PM

[quote]Ooooh miss embroidered asshole is having a meltdown

You're the one who had a literal meltdown on here when no one else had. You've been on Datalounge 24/7 for a week or two, posting crap like this under multiple accounts, feigning outrage at things you very obviously don't care about. At first I thought you were unaware that your meth-addled spelling, random capitalizations and weird spaces around your punctuation made you stand out as much as you do, but it's becoming clear that this is on purpose.

by Anonymousreply 135Last Sunday at 6:24 PM

I can't prove Tony Walton isn't gay but he's been happily married to his second wife Gen LeRoy for several decades now. I believe she's the daughter of Hollywood producer/director Mervyn LeRoy. I'm a Broadway professional who's known Tony since the late 1970s and I've never heard any gossip about his sexuality.

by Anonymousreply 136Last Sunday at 6:47 PM

R134 I can't find an image of it but the link below is the scene right after everyone is startled by the avalanche of snow blocking the train and they meet in the bar. Pfeiffer says she's going to be late to London or wherever she's going. As the camera is showing different viewpoints, there's a shot of her entire body sitting on the bar stool with the shoes visible.

Again the link doesn't show the shoes, it just occurs around this time in the movie. Not only did it stand out me because of the shoes, but because of the atrocious, brown, frumpy outfit they put Pfeiffer in.

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by Anonymousreply 137Last Sunday at 6:51 PM

She's wearing brown boots, r137. I checked later scenes and she's still wearing those boots. I just fast forwarded to her parts, so maybe there's something I missed somewhere, but as far as I can tell she's wearing boots with her sporting outfit.

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by Anonymousreply 138Last Sunday at 8:24 PM

Hmmm maybe I caught them at a weird angle then where they looked like sneakers, my mistake. I could have sworn they looked like sneakers.

by Anonymousreply 139Last Sunday at 8:27 PM

Was Miss Pfeiffer doing some mountain-hiking in the snowy Austrian Alps?

by Anonymousreply 140Last Sunday at 8:28 PM

I didn't mean to harp on the sneakers thing, I've just always been fascinated with mistakes in movies and thought you caught one. I can definitely see where the laces showing at certain angles might look like tennis shoes.

by Anonymousreply 141Last Sunday at 8:32 PM

It's campy, star studded fun with gorgeous design elements but Finney's Poirot is so loud and creepy.

The flashback stuff to the Daisy murder is all really well done though.

Of the three versions I prefer the ITV one with Suchet who is the BEST Poirot of all. It needed a bigger budget and a slightly longer running time but it's the only version that actually feels like it could actually be real. Suchet's anger at the stupidity of their plot is quite believable.

by Anonymousreply 142Last Sunday at 8:41 PM

There is one very brief instant in The Wizard of Oz while they are dancing down the Yellow Brick Road singing We're Off to Meet the Wizard when the camera pans down enough to see Judy is wearing her brown/black rehearsal shoes instead of the Ruby Slippers. It's a famous Movie Goof.

by Anonymousreply 143Last Sunday at 8:42 PM

Suchet added a religious element to the plot that simply didn't fit.

The guys earlier complaining about the "race element" in the Branaugh version didn't take into account that, as has been the case for decades, directors wanted a certain actor regardless of race, and made plot changes to accommodate that. I'm not sure it was done that well in Branaugh's version but at least there was a reason.

Suchet only demanded the religious element because he personally was religious, and it wasn't done well at all.

by Anonymousreply 144Last Sunday at 8:43 PM

[quote] "race element" … religious element

Was Suchet's religious element as utterly jarring and anachronistic as Branagh's 'badass' race element?

by Anonymousreply 145Last Sunday at 8:53 PM

R49 All historical designs reflect the era in which they were designed to a certain degree but if you think the designs of Evil Under The Sun are egregiously 1980s, you're an idiot.

by Anonymousreply 146Last Sunday at 8:57 PM

[quote] I'm not sure it was done that well in Branaugh's version but at least there was a reason.

R144 What was Branagh's reason? Did he want big box-office in Chicago and Alabama?

by Anonymousreply 147Last Sunday at 9:01 PM

With Evil Under the Sun, you had designs that were period appropriate but were also making a comeback in 1980s fashion. Every girl I went to high school with had a late-30s/early-40s "My Girl Friday" style two-piece dress in polka dots with a faux flower pin.

Also complicating things was that no one was going to get a 1941 era permanent wave, so they got 1980s hot curlers or perms instead, which didn't quite look the same.

Ultimately though I thought the Evil Under the Sun costumes were perfectly fine. Not as sumptuous as Murder on the Orient Express or Death on the Nile, but very good.

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by Anonymousreply 148Last Sunday at 9:04 PM

I didn't see it as harping R141, I'm actually impressed you were able to find that screenshot and post it!

In any case, would a lady like her in that era have been walking around a luxury train in what amount to Timberlands? Not an expert on this stuff, I just think the director or costume designer missed an opportunity to showcase the time period better and make it more glamorous.

by Anonymousreply 149Last Sunday at 9:04 PM

Who cares about fucking costumes?!

by Anonymousreply 150Last Sunday at 9:05 PM

I found Evil Under the Sun far too campy. Orient Express had a lethal crime frighteningly laid out at the beginning and feeling that the people on board the train were convincingly sinister.

by Anonymousreply 151Last Sunday at 9:06 PM

[quote] fucking There was none of that in this film.

R160 The costumes gave us something extra to gaze upon because we're trapped inside train carriages for almost two hours.

by Anonymousreply 152Last Sunday at 9:08 PM

I swear to God, my mom used to dress like Myra Gardner in the 80's and 90's when we would go on vacation. It was weird when I first saw her on screen.

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by Anonymousreply 153Last Sunday at 9:09 PM

I too thought I remembered their dancing down the Yellow Brick Road and Judy raises her foot to show a dark colored rehearsal oxford but when I googled it I found two youtube clips from the scene where they are pelted with apples by the apple trees and Judy is wearing her rehearsal shoes. Maybe it happens more than once in the film.

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by Anonymousreply 154Last Sunday at 9:11 PM

The designer did say they "cheated" on shoes in the Branaugh movie and I agree, they did. Her boots don't look accurate at all, as you said, they look like Timberlands. The best I can tell, you only saw those big clunky shoes when skiing or maybe hunting. Most examples of vintage 1930s women's boots that I found were tall lace-up in thin leather, not mid-calf chunky boots.

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by Anonymousreply 155Last Sunday at 9:14 PM

Just watched the Finney film. Of course a big deal is made of the number 12. 12 wounds. 12 letters in each of the anonymous notes. 12 on a jury. And 12 passengers in the sleeping car (excluding Poirot and the victim.) But the train porter was in on the killing, so that’s 13, no? Oliver York and Jacqueline Bisset stabbed together, so that explains the stab wounds, but not the letters or the jury metaphor. And there are 14 letters in DAISY ARMSTRONG.

Tsk tsk.

by Anonymousreply 156Last Sunday at 9:16 PM

How about some nice GAYTEES?

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by Anonymousreply 157Last Sunday at 9:21 PM

Perhaps they were going for something like this but to your point, didn't want to spend the money. Although I find that kind of ridiculous with a $55 million budget.

How much does it cost to make a customer pair of leather boots? $10?

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by Anonymousreply 158Last Sunday at 9:24 PM

or perhaps they are just tasteless and cheap and too stupid to have any real regard for detail.

by Anonymousreply 159Last Sunday at 9:26 PM

No, I agree, I feel like they could have bought an actual pair of 1930s leather boots on Etsy and then had someone mock up a couple of pairs in Pfeiffer's size for a few hundred bucks. Those boots show up a lot in the movie, it's not like most of the other shoes that are barely visible.

by Anonymousreply 160Last Sunday at 9:26 PM

They need to remake the remake so Pfeiffer can have better shoes.

by Anonymousreply 161Last Sunday at 9:31 PM

Add the shoes, drop the Branaugh.

by Anonymousreply 162Last Sunday at 9:34 PM

[quote] drop the Branaugh

I agree. Branagh should be dropped, boxed, sent back to Belfast and never be allowed to direct a film again

by Anonymousreply 163Last Sunday at 10:16 PM

Oh, hun, I dropped Kevin decades ago.

by Anonymousreply 164Last Sunday at 10:45 PM

The credits and the kidnapping montage were both done by the brilliant Richard Williams.

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by Anonymousreply 165Last Sunday at 10:51 PM

I do remember liking Vanessa Redgrave in this, as her character’s about the only one who ever smiles. Practically everyone else is so dour, she’s refreshing!

I know they’re all there to commit a murder, but still…

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by Anonymousreply 166Last Monday at 12:11 AM

We were having a nice discussion until r146 and r150 showed up.

Filthy loathsome trolls.

by Anonymousreply 167Last Monday at 2:08 AM

R135 are you CRYING ?

by Anonymousreply 168Last Monday at 5:38 AM

Rachel Roberts (Hildegard) was a dead ringer for Eddie Izzard.

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by Anonymousreply 169Last Monday at 5:41 AM

Yes, R132! Yes!

by Anonymousreply 170Last Monday at 6:48 AM

Perkins in this is not weak, but his characterization is odd. I did like how he was the district attorney in the remake though. Perkins motive to kill was weaker than Linda Ardens or Princess Dragomirroff's, but nevertheless a fun movie.

by Anonymousreply 171Last Monday at 6:53 AM

What was wrong with the Perkins character is the need to jibe him with Norman Bates - a heap of mommy issues. That starts with the script. It's the one jarringly tacky moment.

by Anonymousreply 172Last Monday at 6:55 AM

I'd be curious to see how the Perkins character is written by Christie in the book. I'm not so sure that Perkins wasn't cast because of the quirks of the written character rather than Perkins being asked to bring a particular Norman Batesness to his performance.

by Anonymousreply 173Last Monday at 7:12 AM

R8 r129, I agree, the opening flashback of the kidnapping is terrifying. I saw this in the theater at age 4 & was spellbound, terrified, crying. Seeing this scene as an adult brings back all the feels, hell, even READING about the scene gives me goosebumps. The movie is superlative & started me on a murder mystery addiction. The book & ‘74 version are tops; Branagh’s version was abysmal but worth seeing, if only to appreciate the ‘74 version that much more.

by Anonymousreply 174Last Monday at 7:38 AM

"What was wrong with the Perkins character is the need to jibe him with Norman Bates"

Presumably the director asked him to!

But seriously, the reason Perkins is weird and twitchy is the same reason that the Ingrid Bergman character is fluttery and squeaking with terror... they're the ones who are having the most trouble with it all. Some of the characters are firm of purpose or have no problem with getting rough, but McQueen doesn't have the nerve to hold steady through the extended charade, and Greta is terrified of eternal hellfire. Of course the Jackie Bissett character is also a mess, but it's not clear if her problems are due to past trauma or current stressors.

by Anonymousreply 175Last Monday at 9:55 AM

R175 She also took a lot of drugs, remember. Her husband was really in charge. McQueen was a freaking Pisces and couldn't handle the pressure lol

by Anonymousreply 176Last Monday at 10:03 AM

I remember watching the film when it was first released. During the opening credits, the music swells when Richard Widmark’s name is shown. I thought at the time that it was a clue to who done it…..little did I know it was a clue to who was done in.

by Anonymousreply 177Last Monday at 10:04 AM

R128, you can also read the first part of the sentence. Obviously, many of the established stars would be dead in the 47 years since its release, and so that was not my point. But not many 47 year old movies elicit the amount of commentary and affection that MoTOE has.

by Anonymousreply 178Last Monday at 10:13 AM

It’s DL catnip.

by Anonymousreply 179Last Monday at 10:14 AM

It's still hard to believe that they got actors like Sean Connery and Vanessa Redgrave to play small, unimportant, supporting roles.

by Anonymousreply 180Last Monday at 10:45 AM

Yeah, I still think that Perkins gets some of the blame here, like when Poirot asks how many letters Ratchet had received and Perkins twitches his head and says, "twelve! twelve! twelve!" It's just kinda dumb. But I love the film and of course I love Anthony Perkins. And you all might be right--they might have asked him to do that kind of thing.

I don't agree with R180 that they have small, unimportant roles. Any of the main 12 are great parts. Famous book, great cast, very famous director. And Connery had worked with Lumet before, and adored him.

by Anonymousreply 181Last Monday at 10:56 AM

[quote]Perkins in this is not weak, but his characterization is odd. I did like how he was the district attorney in the remake though.

I don't understand this sentence. Perkins certainly wasn't in the remake.

by Anonymousreply 182Last Monday at 11:04 AM

r182, maybe he means the character, not Perkins.

by Anonymousreply 183Last Monday at 11:06 AM

No love for the Alfred Molina version? With DL fave Meredith Baxter as Mrs. Hubbard!

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by Anonymousreply 184Last Monday at 11:07 AM

Or the Japanese version?

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by Anonymousreply 185Last Monday at 11:09 AM

I thought Bergman was just okay in her role. She always came off as Bergman playing a mousy Swedish missionary rather than an actual mousy Swedish missionary.

I was impressed by Connery, who actually did make a real character out of his stalwart British military man.

by Anonymousreply 186Last Monday at 12:55 PM

If ever oh ever the Academy gave an Oscar for best ensemble- which they should- this is the standard by which all should be judged.

by Anonymousreply 187Last Monday at 1:06 PM

The identity of the "murderer" is a cop-out.

by Anonymousreply 188Last Monday at 1:12 PM

Why do you think that, r188?

by Anonymousreply 189Last Monday at 1:12 PM

They ALL did it? It just sounds wussy. I like when a list of potentials killers is narrowed down.

Like "every child who participated gets a prize"!

by Anonymousreply 190Last Monday at 1:36 PM

I never quite understood why - if they all did it - they didn't just whack the Belgian and his pal and pretend they fell out the window or whatever.

Would you really want to go up against a dozen killers, three of whom are Vivian Rutledge, Norman Bates and James Bond?

by Anonymousreply 191Last Monday at 1:40 PM

The original plan was clever: The train was only supposed to hold the murderers and their victim. Everyone, even Pierre the conductor, was in on it. It was supposed to look like a random assassin snuck on the train, committed the murder, and then slipped out at the next station. Poirot's presence and getting stuck in the snow changed everything.

Of course, the really clever thing would have been to have Anthony Perkins' PA character slip some poison in Ratchet's drink at any time during his employment, but whatever.

by Anonymousreply 192Last Monday at 1:44 PM

They didn’t just want him dead. They wanted to kill him themselves.

by Anonymousreply 193Last Monday at 1:56 PM

Why does the Japanese version seem like a slapstick comedy? It's cartoonish.

by Anonymousreply 194Last Monday at 2:35 PM

^^ OMG, I want to see that!

by Anonymousreply 195Last Monday at 3:27 PM

^^ Oops… r185 Japanese version

by Anonymousreply 196Last Monday at 3:28 PM

Miss Redgrave looks like a Valkyrie in her scenes, so tall and cool.

by Anonymousreply 197Last Monday at 4:06 PM

Films like this used to be available on Netflix, Hulu or prime. Now they want paying members to pay MORE than the monthly fee to see classic films.

by Anonymousreply 198Last Monday at 4:09 PM

I thought it was interesting that they represented three generations of amazingly beautiful women - Bacall as the older woman; Redgrave as the middle-aged woman; Bissett as the young woman.

They all looked fabulous but Redgrave was shockingly beautiful and her amused response to Poirot is brilliantly done.

I really wish there had been an Academy Award for ensemble. This would have been a cinch to win, even with The Godfather Part II out the same year.

by Anonymousreply 199Last Monday at 5:11 PM

Oh, r178, I was just joshin' you.

by Anonymousreply 200Last Monday at 5:16 PM

R43 here: another wonderful memory I have of see MOTOE was Michael York. SWOON! Even at 13, I knew he was handsome and he made me tingle "down there." After seeing MOTOE, I got on an Agatha Christie kick and probably read 30 or 40 of her mysteries. I was living in London at the time and my parents used to love to go to the antique markets and while they were looking to antiques, I was looking for used Agatha Christie paperbacks - which I still have (I'm kind of a hoarder...) The link is the poster I have - but mine still has its color...

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by Anonymousreply 201Last Monday at 5:44 PM

thank you r201 for introducing me to that site!

by Anonymousreply 202Last Monday at 5:54 PM

"I never quite understood why - if they all did it - they didn't just whack the Belgian and his pal and pretend they fell out the window or whatever."

They were right to leave Poirot alive, the murder of a Famous Detective would generate massive suspicion and put pressure on the police to take the case seriously, but if a known criminal gets murdered by an unknown assassin who vanished into the countryside... then the police do a bit of searching and then declare the case "cold".

Bacall put that into her performance, she showed that her character knew exactly who and what Poirot was, but she decided to go ahead with the plan anyway - if she didn't think she'd fool him then she thought she'd face him down.

by Anonymousreply 203Last Monday at 6:02 PM

I thought it would have been great if the so-called killer was not the real killer at all, and everyone killed an innocent man. And Poirot told them so the'd have to live with themselves with that fact.

by Anonymousreply 204Last Monday at 6:25 PM

Did Poirot actually have evidence? The way he put it all together was brilliant. But I can't remember if he had actual evidence - besides the fact that everybody was somewhat related to the baby.

by Anonymousreply 205Last Monday at 7:15 PM

I would've given the Oscar to Bacall. The look she gives the steward as he breaks down was better than Bergman's scene.

by Anonymousreply 206Last Monday at 7:27 PM

[quote] better than Bergman's scene.

Everyone agrees she was sleeping through her scenes. She and husband Lars were busy planning a new expensive production in London so she took the easy option by swapping with Wendy.

I love both Ingrid and Wendy but I do feel short-changed. Ingrid would have been stunning as the dragon-like Dragomiroff in those fabulous costumes..

Ingrid knows how to spit fire when she played the villainous 'Hedda Gabler' and this evil millionairess—

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by Anonymousreply 207Last Monday at 7:40 PM

R180 Sean Connery played in ‘the small supporting role’ because he was loyal to Sidney Lumet, the so-called ‘actors director’.

Connery was desperate to break away from the Bond franchise in 1965 so he made some bad movies (such as ‘A Fine Madness' all about wife abuse with Joanne Woodward).

He made ‘The Hill’ for Lumet in 1965. It’s a strange, incomprehensible movie about soldiers (it also co-stars homosexuals Harry Andrews and Michael Redgrave and quasi-homophobe Ian Bannen).

Anyway, as I said, I found it incomprehensible but Connery did for four more movies for Lumet including another bleak dreary movie called 'The Offence' in 1973.

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by Anonymousreply 208Last Monday at 8:28 PM

Finney was excellent in another Lumet movie, "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead".

by Anonymousreply 209Last Monday at 8:45 PM

A few weeks after the film’s release Bisset was on the cover of Vogue, promoting the film.

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by Anonymousreply 210Last Monday at 9:17 PM

Terrible pic, r210 curious that photo was chose for the cover. Bisset almost looks ordinary.

by Anonymousreply 211Last Monday at 9:35 PM

You like her 1976 cover better?

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by Anonymousreply 212Last Monday at 9:49 PM

A better 1976 cover.

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by Anonymousreply 213Last Monday at 9:57 PM

No - the American covers are much, much better. Cleaner, with more impact.

by Anonymousreply 214Last Monday at 10:03 PM

Am I the only one who thinks Bisset & Lisa Vanderpump look an awful lot alike?

by Anonymousreply 215Last Monday at 10:44 PM

Some people photograph much better in still photographs, or on moving film.

Apparently Jacqueline Bisset is one of them.

by Anonymousreply 216Last Monday at 10:59 PM

[quote] I would've given the Oscar to Bacall. The look she gives the steward as he breaks down was better than Bergman's scene.

Diane Bitch Ladd cunting about a BSA win for the cunt supreme "Miss Bacall to you" would have been a favorite topic on DL, if Bacall had been nominated and then won.

by Anonymousreply 217Last Monday at 11:09 PM

Wow! I thought Star Wars fan boys were over the top but they're nothin' compared to a bunch of queens swooning over a campy old movie....which is a lot of fun but to suggest Lauren Bacall should have won an Oscar for THAT performance or that the cast deserved some special ensemble Oscar over The Godfather Part 2 is ludicrous.

It's campy, over the top fluff!

There's some old Marys on here almost beside themselves with queenish glee.

by Anonymousreply 218Last Tuesday at 2:41 AM

Aw, r218 needs attention. Poor thing.

Seriously, r218, you were calling people idiots for not appreciating "the designs of Evil Under The Sun" but now you're throwing out homophobic insults left and right at people for just participating in this thread.

I wish people like you would stop treating DL like their emotional toilet. I'm sorry you're already having a bad day, but Miss, that ain't our problem.

by Anonymousreply 219Last Tuesday at 2:47 AM

R219 Bitch, please. I like the damn silly movie. It's on regular repeat along with all the other campy ass Christie films. It's silly fun and much of the fun is in the ham handed performances.

Even Ingrid Bergman was classy enough to be appalled they gave her an Oscar for that ridiculous "leetle brown babies" performance.

by Anonymousreply 220Last Tuesday at 2:54 AM

The point seems to be that this thread is ALSO silly fun, r220, so people are wondering why you've gone out of your way to try to ruin it, and make the kind of harsh insults usually reserved for times when an actual fight is going on.

by Anonymousreply 221Last Tuesday at 2:59 AM

[quote] campy ass Christie

Now, Edith, what is this man talking about? Is he talking about donkeys?

Well, Agatha, you don't need to worry about these Americans and their bizarre customs. There are lots of cowboys in America with a great fondness for their donkeys and asses.

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by Anonymousreply 222Last Tuesday at 3:37 AM

I wonder if Bacall was passed over for an Oscar nomination because she might have been considered Lead and not Supporting?

by Anonymousreply 223Last Tuesday at 4:45 AM

r207 Bergman had plenty of practice being a dragon lady/uberbitch in 1964's "The Visit," co-starring Anthony Quinn. I never knew she could be so full-on threatening and manipulative. I wonder if she enjoyed that part, being SO cast against type? Had Bergman played the princess, she would've had to tone it down, but the steely reserve and determination for the Madame Zachanassian role would've been a plus. I can recommend the film.

by Anonymousreply 224Last Tuesday at 5:45 AM

R208 my Movaries /male ovaries exploded when I saw Sean with a crew cut. Thanks

by Anonymousreply 225Last Tuesday at 7:26 AM

Bacall = great beauty. Redgrave= beautiful. Bisset= pretty IMO. She's the very pretty girl in high school, not the Hollywood beauty like Bergen, or even Farro...sorry, like Bergen. (almost forgot this was DL)

by Anonymousreply 226Last Tuesday at 7:37 AM

Bacall was never so much beautiful as striking. Very photogenic, the camera found her deeply interesting at every age, but her face is almost manly, too much so to be beautiful.

Bissett was lovely, but maybe she was more attractive than beautiful. Lovely face, very nice figure, extremely appealing personality, the sort of woman that both men and women find appealing on every level.

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by Anonymousreply 227Last Tuesday at 12:29 PM

I think young Bacall was a nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnockout! she was DASHIT! Redgrave is sublime because she has a glow that no one else has. My gawd, is she sublime. I watched Elizabeth and Mary stuart or whatever the other day. No one can hold a candle to her. She played the Mary as an airhead, vain, shallow , silly and sensual woman without judging her for one second, and her performance was just gripping. Shame she's such a crazy cunt. But she's handsome, not beautiful IMO

by Anonymousreply 228Last Tuesday at 12:36 PM

Haven't seen the film in a long time but isn't the Swedish governess a much larger/better role with that fabulous monologue about the "little brown babies" than the Princess Dragomiroff, who basically just harummphs her reactions to Poirot's questions? And I think Bergman was years younger than Hiller who was a more appropriate age for the elderly Princess.

The Princess' fabulous veiled costume is based on Queen Mary at the funeral for her son. Please google it.

by Anonymousreply 229Last Tuesday at 12:42 PM

[quote] I can't prove Tony Walton isn't gay but he's been happily married to his second wife Gen LeRoy for several decades now. I believe she's the daughter of Hollywood producer/director Mervyn LeRoy.

Tony Walton is NOT a fag, and I'm the dame who can prove it!

by Anonymousreply 230Last Tuesday at 12:45 PM

I don't like Bergman. She's a fucking Viking frau! so boring and humourless. She was pretty in intermezzo, but the nose on her face soon turned into a trunk to go with her elephant hips and legs

by Anonymousreply 231Last Tuesday at 12:46 PM

[quote] Who cares about fucking costumes?!

Only the gay men on this forum, brainiac.

by Anonymousreply 232Last Tuesday at 12:46 PM

R223 , no she was because nobody voted for her

by Anonymousreply 233Last Tuesday at 12:49 PM

R225 Me too.

That still from that Youtube video shows that Sean was a lush hottie.

by Anonymousreply 234Last Tuesday at 12:52 PM

r234 there is NO WAY that man was a complete stranger for homosex

by Anonymousreply 235Last Tuesday at 12:55 PM

[quote] Haven't seen the film in a long time but isn't the Swedish governess a much larger/better role with that fabulous monologue about the "little brown babies" than the Princess Dragomiroff, who basically just harummphs her reactions to Poirot's questions? And I think Bergman was years younger than Hiller who was a more appropriate age for the elderly Princess.

It has more lines, and more opportunity for drama; but it's not the better role. Had anyone but Ingrid Bergman played it it would not nearly be so memorable, and even still Hiller's performance as the Princess Dragomiroff is the most memorale thing in the movie (other than the "walking the catwalk" display of the fabulous 30s outfits in the Istanbul train station).

Bergman was just beloved by the Greatest Generation, and everyone still felt guilty (even after she had won the Oscar for "Anastasia") that she had been blacklisted for a while because of leaving Dr. Peter Lindstrom for Roberto Rosselini. Even though it was generally recognized Bergman is a fine actress, her Swedish accent always bothered some people, and this was one of the few movies she made for Hollywood where the accent genuinely made sense. Moreover, she is really moving in the role, and the "born backvards / Minne-OPP-oh-loos / leetle brown babies" scene is superbly done.

But not even that can compare to the fabulousness of Wendy Hiller in that ridiculous hat and veil announcing, "She marrrrried a Turrrk! As such, ve neverrr spoke of it!"

by Anonymousreply 236Last Tuesday at 12:55 PM

Is that crew cut Sean sports in The Hill a toupee? If so, it's fabulous and so much better than the ones he wore as 007.

by Anonymousreply 237Last Tuesday at 12:56 PM

"It has more lines, and more opportunity for drama. But it's not the better role."

OK, that makes no sense.

by Anonymousreply 238Last Tuesday at 12:58 PM

R235 Didn't that big American homosexual Joshua Logan personally audition all those muscle-boys showing off their biceps and low slung shorts doing the shimmy for the London production of 'South Pacific'?

by Anonymousreply 239Last Tuesday at 1:04 PM


by Anonymousreply 240Last Tuesday at 1:16 PM

The scene of the passengers arriving at the train, and then the train taking off is wonderful. This isn't my favourite of the Christie films (that would be Death on the Nile), but that scene is so well done.

by Anonymousreply 241Last Tuesday at 1:26 PM

[quote]R227 Bissett was lovely, but maybe she was more attractive than beautiful.


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by Anonymousreply 242Last Tuesday at 1:27 PM

[quote] The scene of the passengers arriving at the train, and then the train taking off is wonderful.

But everything after that induces claustrophobia.

by Anonymousreply 243Last Tuesday at 1:31 PM

R242 well she's not very beautiful. big face. big nose, small eyes. she's charming. It's ok to be charming. One has to see her in two for the road , to see how beautiful Audrey looks (and Audrey is not one of my favorite beauties) and how far Jacqueline falls short of her

by Anonymousreply 244Last Tuesday at 1:32 PM

IMHO the Princess Dragomiroff is a much better role than that of the missionary. The missionary is all anxiety and fear of hellfire, while the Princess is actively engaging in a duel of wits with Poirot, doing her best to help the plot along by mixing useful bits of misinformation in with her admissions of truth. And Hiller gives the Princess a sense of an indomitable will and formidable intelligence, inside a body that's falling to bits, she's the one character who lets Poirot know he's met his match *before* the finale.

And silly me, I always thought that Hiller was very old and had been genuinely disabled by a stroke before taking the role, but I was wrong (I must have mixed her up with someone else). In fact, Hiller was 62 and in good health when she made the film, you'd swear she was 80+ and had a real facial droop! Damn, all these big-name actors made the most of small roles...

by Anonymousreply 245Last Tuesday at 2:04 PM

[quote] Hiller was very old

She was just 3 years older than Ingrid but she had an odd, impertinent face.

She only got lead roles three times; the lead role in 'The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp' was written for her but she retired for marital duties. She retired for seven years and for some unknown reason only took supporting roles after that.

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by Anonymousreply 246Last Tuesday at 2:21 PM

I too assumed Hiller was already ancient.

by Anonymousreply 247Last Tuesday at 2:23 PM

I've never heard of anyone who didn't LOVE Wendy Hiller

by Anonymousreply 248Last Tuesday at 2:24 PM

We appreciate Wendy because she so often got the sympathetic supporting roles.

She was the abused ex-mistress to Burt Lancaster, the wife to the intransigent martyr Thomas More and the long-suffering sister to the insane monomaniac Geraldine Page.

by Anonymousreply 249Last Tuesday at 2:46 PM

Why can't Sean and the others pull an Aldo Ray and just say "yep , I let any guy who could give me a part or raise my profile suck my dick and it didn't compromise me in the least " ? whay are they such cowards?

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by Anonymousreply 250Last Tuesday at 2:51 PM

[quote] suck my dick

I'm sure it happened

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by Anonymousreply 251Last Tuesday at 3:01 PM

Where is the love for Martin Balsam in this?

by Anonymousreply 252Last Tuesday at 3:16 PM

This thread motivated me to torrent the movie. I will watch it tonight!

by Anonymousreply 253Last Tuesday at 3:17 PM

mee too R253

by Anonymousreply 254Last Tuesday at 3:18 PM

R252 Martin Balsam is the poor man's Eli Wallach. He specialised in playing nobodies.

by Anonymousreply 255Last Tuesday at 3:19 PM

R252 I had to google "martin balsam" . I thought he might be the real estate agent in rosemary's babay

by Anonymousreply 256Last Tuesday at 3:21 PM

is it only me, or anyone else loses it at the opening shot of DOTN, when the camera lusciously follows the horse accross Linette's gorgeous lawn and somptuous house, and the horse take dump after dump ? It never gets old. How could they keep that take ?

by Anonymousreply 257Last Tuesday at 3:31 PM

12 Angry Men, Psycho, Cape Fear, Breakfast at Tiffany's, Catch-22, Tora! Tora! Tora!, Taking the Pelham 1,2,3, Murder on the Orient Express, All The President's Men, and St. Elmo's Fire are all great movies. He disappears into ensembles so elegantly you forget him.

by Anonymousreply 258Last Tuesday at 3:31 PM

Martin Balsam got good billing because of his position in the alphabet.

by Anonymousreply 259Last Tuesday at 3:32 PM

Ok I have a problem . you had won me over. I am 8 minutes into the movie . 8 fucking minutes. And I'm bored out of my mind. It's creepy AF and Finney is immediately campy and insincere as Poirot

by Anonymousreply 260Last Tuesday at 3:37 PM

Balsam and Bergman look better in the poster than they do in the movie.

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by Anonymousreply 261Last Tuesday at 3:38 PM

R14 Were Bergman and Ball scratching each others' eyes out? After all, both claimed a special relationship with Bogart.

So those two have a link.

Balsam and Perkins both appeared in Psycho. Widmark and Bacall appeared together in The Cobweb .

Redgrave and Gielgud appeared in The Charge of the Light Brigade, that TV movie about Richard Wagner and that sad remake of ‘A Man for All Seasons’.

I wonder if there are other links?

by Anonymousreply 262Last Tuesday at 3:51 PM

Don't understand a 50 yo film is not free to watch on Hulu and Netflix!

by Anonymousreply 263Last Tuesday at 3:51 PM

Ok Wendy Hiller is hilarious in her entrance and has lifted my mood. Bacall is superb. The frenchman Is terrific. Sean is virile and very good. all the others are pretty hammy. What does Finney think he's doing ????? he's not even in the same movie. Poirot isn't some special needs /torticollis afflicted wampire. WTF is that ? I am not amused

by Anonymousreply 264Last Tuesday at 3:53 PM

It's free on as I'm watching it NOW silly, several people told you already

by Anonymousreply 265Last Tuesday at 3:55 PM

It's on HBO max.

by Anonymousreply 266Last Tuesday at 3:55 PM

"Martin Balsam got good billing because of his position in the alphabet."

And Bacall got top billing because of the alphabetical order, I wonder if that's why she chose her stage name? Yeah, I watched it again on Vudu last night, even bought a copy and I only buy a few streaming films. I'm sick of buying media only to have it go obsolete, VHS to DVD to streaming fuck it. I only buy things I know I'll watch many times, and not many of those!

As for these hypothetical Oscars, everyone but Finney was a supporting player.

by Anonymousreply 267Last Tuesday at 4:00 PM

Anthony Perkins is so faggoty. And why was he even a star in 1974 ?

by Anonymousreply 268Last Tuesday at 4:01 PM

Don't like Norman Bates in this, he is way too twitchy

by Anonymousreply 269Last Tuesday at 4:03 PM

R262 Bergman and perkins were in french film AIMEZ VOUS bRAHMS ?

by Anonymousreply 270Last Tuesday at 4:03 PM

R269 his shtick is so tiresome

by Anonymousreply 271Last Tuesday at 4:04 PM

Perkins played neurotics from 1956 with 'Fear Strikes Out'.

by Anonymousreply 272Last Tuesday at 4:09 PM

R272 don't even go there. if he weren't dead i could kill him for that

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by Anonymousreply 273Last Tuesday at 4:19 PM

I saw this in the movies as a kid, on a Saturday night, packed house, and the audience really loved Bergman. She was hilarious. Lumey wanted her to play the countess but she asked to play this other part.

by Anonymousreply 274Last Tuesday at 4:38 PM


by Anonymousreply 275Last Tuesday at 4:38 PM

She always does that; she's such a cunt. she asked to play the prostatute in dr jekyll and mr hyde instead of the good girl. What if Lana really wanted to play the prostatute ? What if someone else was cast as the countess and really wanted to play the part ? you're a cunt, Ingrid, I hate your guts

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by Anonymousreply 276Last Tuesday at 4:42 PM

why is no one asking me if I want to play the countess ???

by Anonymousreply 277Last Tuesday at 4:44 PM

R274 See R207

Yes, Ingrid was naughty and selfish and, as I said earlier, I feel very short-changed.

She and John Gielgud were worrying about this instead—

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by Anonymousreply 278Last Tuesday at 4:45 PM

I was getting Ingrid to sign my program after a performance and I congratulated her on her nomination, r274. She was very humble about it.

by Anonymousreply 279Last Tuesday at 4:46 PM

She had every reason to be humble.

by Anonymousreply 280Last Tuesday at 4:48 PM

"Ingrid is very expensive, when I asked her to play Hedda Gabler, she told me for Tea and Symphony she got 25% of the gross. So I paid her that, and she got really quite rich. Then one day I saw the Tea and Symphony books and found out that she had actually got only 20% of the net. It was too late. I had already paid her."

by Anonymousreply 281Last Tuesday at 4:50 PM

she took Betty's triumph turn in cactus flower to the screen. Bitch just stole Betty's part. I can't ,CUNT

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by Anonymousreply 282Last Tuesday at 4:50 PM

Regardless, r280, she was. She was also lovely and had great skin.

by Anonymousreply 283Last Tuesday at 4:52 PM

R283 that's from all the blood she was sucking

by Anonymousreply 284Last Tuesday at 4:53 PM

This is an all star cast so I don't understand why Rachel Roberts, whose only claim to fame is to have swallowed a bottle of ammonia before walking throug a glass wall in her house is in the movie ?

by Anonymousreply 285Last Tuesday at 5:06 PM

Dear R285, you should look at Google before shaming yourself here.

by Anonymousreply 286Last Tuesday at 5:08 PM

eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh R286 I have and I still don't see no casablanca and no to have and have not in her credits

by Anonymousreply 287Last Tuesday at 5:10 PM

OK I get points for trying, but I have to stop watching that movie, it's too boring. sorry guys, Give me DOTN any day instead of this shit

by Anonymousreply 288Last Tuesday at 5:12 PM

[quote] Suchet only demanded the religious element because he personally was religious, and it wasn't done well at all.

I love Suchet's Poirot. Suchet has talked about his Catholicism. IIRC, he became Catholic later in life. IMO, Suchet pings.

by Anonymousreply 289Last Tuesday at 5:15 PM

The ending of "Orient Express" is a let-down, IMO. "They all did it" is an unsatisfying way to end a murder mystery.

by Anonymousreply 290Last Tuesday at 5:16 PM

Kids these days have no attention spans to appreciate art.

by Anonymousreply 291Last Tuesday at 5:32 PM

Rachel Roberts was a highly respected, Oscar nominated actress. Hell, the same year as Orient Express, she was nominated for the Tony for playing the Bergman role in The Visit!

by Anonymousreply 292Last Tuesday at 5:42 PM

The classic Doctors' Wives...

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by Anonymousreply 293Last Tuesday at 5:46 PM

On IMDB's "Murder on the Orient Express" trivia page, Gielgud is quoted as saying, "Ingrid speaks five languages, and can't act in any of them." He actually admired her, as a person and an actress, and narrated the posthumous documentary, "Ingrid". His actual quote (in the NYT) was:

"Everybody adored her,' Mr. Gielgud said the other day, reminiscing over the telephone from his home in Buckinghamshire, England. 'She was without conceit. She acted in about five languages and didn't really know any of them. She would make the oddest and most marvelous mistakes."

by Anonymousreply 294Last Tuesday at 5:47 PM

Johnny directed Ingrid in that Maugham play at R278 and co-starred in the New York production.

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by Anonymousreply 295Last Tuesday at 5:52 PM

Someone above repeated the old canard about Joshua Logan casting Sean Connery in the original London cast of South Pacific. Connery was indeed an amateur bodybuilder, which lead to his being cast in South Pacific, his first professional job. But it was a regional production in Manchester or Liverpool, I forget which. He was never in the original production. He was also rumored to be an extra in A Night to Remember but there are no records to support that and he's never been spotted in the finished film.

by Anonymousreply 296Last Tuesday at 6:22 PM

[quote] It really is Christie's cleverest mystery.

No, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is. Impossible to film, which makes it even cleverer.

by Anonymousreply 297Last Tuesday at 6:41 PM


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by Anonymousreply 298Last Tuesday at 6:48 PM

r297 They did a TV version of it (as a Poirot) but it was nothing compared to the book, which is brilliant.

by Anonymousreply 299Last Tuesday at 6:52 PM

[quote]Don't understand a 50 yo film is not free to watch on Hulu and Netflix!

Because we're still talking about it and there's a demand to watch it, so they can monetize it.

by Anonymousreply 300Last Tuesday at 6:52 PM

r276=Brandon Cody

by Anonymousreply 301Last Tuesday at 6:52 PM

R276 I suppose that champagne bottle is supposed to represent a male orgasm. Dr Jekkyll has to masturbate and release his unconscious animal desires before leaving the house for sex.

Why did MGM hire a lame non-actor like Spencer Tracy for that film. He is too incompetent to play one character let alone two.

by Anonymousreply 302Last Tuesday at 7:20 PM

Just re-watched the film, hadn't seen it in decades. Boy, it's hammy though still lots of fun.

Not quite as opulent and sweeping as I remembered. The scene at the train station that introduces the characters has no underscoring of music at all with very little dialogue.

by Anonymousreply 303Last Tuesday at 7:51 PM

But when the music starts, r303...

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by Anonymousreply 304Last Tuesday at 7:56 PM

R239, R297 When will some man do a proper scholarly account of that difficult man who I think of the THIRD most successful gay director in Hollywood.

His memoir was explicit about his mental breakdowns, his bad marriage and his casting of hunky men but skirts around the big issues.

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by Anonymousreply 305Last Tuesday at 7:59 PM

[quote] What does it mean to be an "actor's director?"

It means to be an actor especially favored by the gaffers and the key grips, Rose.

by Anonymousreply 306Last Tuesday at 8:00 PM

[quote] What does it mean to be an "actor's director?"

I think it means to be a director who knows where the actor is coming from. E.g., a director who has at least a little bit of acting experience.

by Anonymousreply 307Last Tuesday at 8:03 PM

[quote] What does it mean to be an "actor's director?"

Sidney Lumet and John Frankenheimer both hired British actors who are theatre-trained and, therefore, better actors.

Lumet previously hired Vanessa for this movie which was all talk and no action and, therefore, unseen by the masses.

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by Anonymousreply 308Last Tuesday at 8:34 PM

[quote] acting IS shouting

On the contrary, Miss R110.

Stage actress, Eileen Atkins was working on a production with Alec Guinness.

She noticed he was underplaying (which he did a lot). But she also assumed he would be barely audible and hardly varied his vocal volume.

Guinness replied that it was the director and the sound staff's job to worry about all that. There was a Foley Artists Department.

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by Anonymousreply 309Last Tuesday at 9:37 PM

I never saw Gielgud on stage but every single performance he gave on film/TV was essentially the same...dry, waspy, old snob who looked vaguely Mandarin but had a lot of opinions about other actor's performances.

by Anonymousreply 310Last Tuesday at 11:39 PM

Well, R310, I hope you weren't personally offended by his opinions.

We're expressing ours on Datalounge all the time.

by Anonymousreply 311Last Tuesday at 11:46 PM

R311 Didn't say I was...I was basically expressing my opinion that an old queen like Gielgud had some nerve to be overly critical over other's performances when he was such a Johnny One Note himself.

Which makes Gielgud the ultimate Data Lounger...practically a patron saint.

by Anonymousreply 312Last Tuesday at 11:50 PM

In the early 50s Gielgud was caught in the act of sucking cock in a London men's room. It was well covered in the press. He cancelled all his appearances and intended to retire. His friends begged him to reconsider and after a year, he finally accepted another role onstage. He was terrified to make his first entrance, thinking he would be booed offstage. Instead he received a prolonged standing ovation.

by Anonymousreply 313Last Wednesday at 12:02 AM

R298 true story of my life : I was a fairly horny, quite normal teen, wanking to my dad's "penthouse" playmates centrefolds and such, big tits and so on, fantasizing about hot chicks, until I saw these pictures of Sean. That was it for me. Even though I have to say that, had I seen the last one, (his flat ass) I might still be straight today

by Anonymousreply 314Last Wednesday at 1:26 AM

"Caught sucking cock in a London men's room."

by Anonymousreply 315Last Wednesday at 1:27 AM

Lumet talks at length about Murder on the Orient Express in his book ´Making Movies´.

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by Anonymousreply 316Last Wednesday at 3:25 AM

When Jacqueline Bisset is revealed to be the daughter of Lauren Bacall (and the aunt of Daisy Armstrong), I'm surprised Bisset doesn't have a big dramatic moment of speaking with an American accent instead of the "Russian" accent we've heard earlier. We just hear her approach Bacall and say: "Mama." In actuality, we barely hear her speak throughout the entire film. I wonder if Lumet was protecting her as a limited young actress who couldn't believably make the transition?

I also don't really get how Bisset and Michael York as this fabulous royal couple who seemed to be photographed everywhere in the press as celebrities could expect to keep the secret from Poirot of her notorious American origins. Am I missing something?

by Anonymousreply 317Last Wednesday at 4:35 AM

R317 She was supposed not to talk much because her mother feared she collapsed under stress. The famous couple didn't expect Poirot on the train. Bissett wasn't a limited young actress. She had supporting roles in more than fifteen films before MOTOE: the better known are The Detective (1968) , Bullitt (1968), Airport (1970) and La nuit américaine (1973).

by Anonymousreply 318Last Wednesday at 4:58 AM

Well, r318, Bisset and York were never really given the big "reveal" scene most of the other characters had for whatever reason. They both just sit there as Finney rails at them.

by Anonymousreply 319Last Wednesday at 5:05 AM

I love Bisset in "Day for Night" (1973), perhaps my favorite film about the making of a movie.

by Anonymousreply 320Last Wednesday at 6:09 AM

[quote] I never saw Gielgud on stage but every single performance he gave on film/TV was essentially the same...dry, waspy, old snob who looked vaguely Mandarin but had a lot of opinions about other actor's performances.

I find this to be the case with a lot of older British actors who are revered in their country and by Anglophile snobs in the rest of the world. They deliver the same performance over and over in every role but get lauded anyway because their accents and voice modulation are automatically assumed to be indicative of great acting.

by Anonymousreply 321Last Wednesday at 7:16 AM

R317, Bisset can barely act, and Michael york not at all. he was like a joke in the 70's, he was in every single movie, wasn't acting, and didn't even seem to be an actor. he was so see-through, so bland, he just seemed to be passing by the set and somebody dressed him in period clothes and pushed him on the set as a recurrent joke. I could swear he looks into the camera every time he's finished reciting his line

by Anonymousreply 322Last Wednesday at 7:48 AM

I thought York was very good in Cabaret.

by Anonymousreply 323Last Wednesday at 8:10 AM

R323 are you serious ? York was in Cabaret ???

by Anonymousreply 324Last Wednesday at 8:13 AM

He was the male lead, R324.

by Anonymousreply 325Last Wednesday at 8:16 AM

York was also on Knots Landing.

by Anonymousreply 326Last Wednesday at 8:18 AM

R325 I honestly don't remember that AT ALL; FOR REAL

by Anonymousreply 327Last Wednesday at 8:20 AM

shout out to all the marvelous and spooky bass clarinet licks in the score

by Anonymousreply 328Last Wednesday at 8:24 AM

Martin Balsam used to be George Clooney's father-in-law. And Joyce Van Patten was his mother-in-law.

by Anonymousreply 329Last Wednesday at 8:35 AM

I did not know Clooney used to be married to Talia Balsam!

by Anonymousreply 330Last Wednesday at 8:49 AM

[quote]r322 Bisset can barely act

Well, she’s no powerhouse, but especially in that era Hollywood needed starlets on hand who had SOME personality… but weren’t going to upstage Steve McQueen, Frank Sinatra, etc. too badly.

She was primarily decorous, though not inept or anything. That lezzie lou Edith Head, who saw everyone naked, said Bisset had one of the great bodies of all time. (Irene Shariff’s choice for perfect proportions was the obscure Marisa Mell.)

by Anonymousreply 331Last Wednesday at 8:59 AM

While she's not an Oscar-caliber actress, I think Bisset is quite good in Airport, Orient Express, and Rich & Famous.

by Anonymousreply 332Last Wednesday at 9:07 AM

Bisset was good in Nip/Tuck (which is on hulu).

by Anonymousreply 333Last Wednesday at 9:11 AM

Bisset was pretty, bland and harmless, not working much = always available to replace a star at short notice

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by Anonymousreply 334Last Wednesday at 10:03 AM

After reading all this I will take another look at the movie tonight.

by Anonymousreply 335Last Wednesday at 10:20 AM

I was going to re-watch MotOE too but ow all this talk of Jacqueline Bisset makes me want to re-watch Rich & Famous.

by Anonymousreply 336Last Wednesday at 10:51 AM

Bisset is good in the film "Latter Days" (2003), now on Tubi. Hot gay scenes!

by Anonymousreply 337Last Wednesday at 10:56 AM

R321 Do you want to name names?

by Anonymousreply 338Last Wednesday at 12:47 PM

The Bisset character in MotOE is supposed to be born and bred in America, yes?

by Anonymousreply 339Last Wednesday at 4:22 PM

Not sure about that, R339. Her mother was American but when Poirot saw her perform, I assume it was in London. So Linda Arden may have lived in the UK or Europe for a good chunk of her adult life, which seems likely since one of her daughters married a Hungarian and the other married a Brit, so there's a chance the girls were raised outside the US.

Either way, the Countess is faking her Hungarian accent.

by Anonymousreply 340Last Wednesday at 5:32 PM

Op is gray. Why?

by Anonymousreply 341Last Wednesday at 5:36 PM

[quote] Yeah, I watched it again on Vudu last night, even bought a copy and I only buy a few streaming films. I'm sick of buying media only to have it go obsolete, VHS to DVD to streaming fuck it. I only buy things I know I'll watch many times, and not many of those!

Thanks for all the details.

We were all SO curious!

by Anonymousreply 342Last Wednesday at 7:08 PM

[quote] Op is gray. Why?

Its the angry Froy fans jealous that the eldergays are having too much fun.

They closed down that other eldergays thread entitled 'Sad, last days on Datalounge'.

by Anonymousreply 343Last Wednesday at 7:20 PM

Is Froy iin the Brannagh remake?

by Anonymousreply 344Last Wednesday at 7:23 PM

Jacqueline Bisset was nearly 30 when she did Orient Express and it was something like her 20th film which by that point included leading roles in Airport and in Truffaut's highly acclaimed Day for Night.

She wasn't a brilliant actress but she was sexy and gorgeous and certainly one of the more talented sexy actresses out there.

And, the Count and Countess have very insignificant roles...they don't have much to do. I mean, it's an ensemble piece with 17 characters in it. Some of them aren't going to get much to do and for the name stars, the Andrenyis have the least to do. Even Rachel Roberts as Hildegard has a juicier role. Bisset and York are just here to look pretty and glamorous.

by Anonymousreply 345Last Wednesday at 8:48 PM

"A mighty, masculine steam engine roars across the screen to a accompaniment of syncopated, twiddly effeminate waltz?'

"It's a DEATH TRAIN!"---Bernard Herrmann

"And I'm bored out of my mind. This from somebody who probably grew up on Saw and Hostel...

"It's creepy AF" It's called 'atmosphere,' essential to a murder mystery.

"that truly AWFUL Hollywood version of Terence Rattigan's 'Separate Tables'."

So AWFUL it boasts spectacular performances by Hiller, Kerr and Niven, as well as the entire British supporting cast. "It makes me sick, Mummy. It makes me sick, it makes me sick, IT MAKES ME SICK!!!"

Michael York is the very spine of CABARET, like Mason in A STAR IS BORN. Without them, the films would not have been half as good.

MOTOE is a devastating novel/film when you carefully examine its plot. The lives of 12 people have been destroyed by the evil machinations of a gangster. Finney's summary of the tragedy is brilliantly rendered. The evil that men do... A statement like "They all did it" is an unsatisfying way to end a murder mystery" has no grasp of storytelling, theme, plot or metaphor.

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by Anonymousreply 346Last Wednesday at 9:18 PM

R334 Bisset is still working and has 2 2021 films completed and 2 more in post production. Back in the day she was in Bullit, The Detective, Airport, The Mephisto Waltz, Day for Night, The Deep, Rich and Famous, Class, Under the Volcano with Albert Finney who she appeared with in 1967s Two for the Road.

by Anonymousreply 347Last Wednesday at 9:20 PM

Yes, R346, Bernard Hermann agreed with me!

And I'm sorry to say that David Lean allowed an equally sugary score in that other train movie (Passage To India) as well as his big failure (Ryan's daughter)

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by Anonymousreply 348Last Wednesday at 9:27 PM

R347 Vy she vorking ? she poor ?

by Anonymousreply 349Last Thursday at 2:04 AM

Bernard Herrmann was a fantastic composer, but even genius artists can be wrong. Richard Rodney Bennett's score for Orient Express is exquisite, matching the mood and texture of the film perfectly. Try to imagine the score for Psycho or Obsession laid over Orient Express -- it would be absurd.

by Anonymousreply 350Last Thursday at 5:38 AM

Someone aways back in the thread complained about Gielgud's and other 20th century English actors' performances in late 20th century films. They gave the performances they were hired to do. Hollywood then, as now, was about stereotypes.

Go back and read their reviews from decades earlier. They were stunning and daring actors in their primes. Read the reviews for Gielgud's Broadway Hamlet with Lillian Gish as his Ophelia.

by Anonymousreply 351Last Thursday at 5:57 AM

R350, I agree that Richard Rodney Bennett's work on MOTOE is superb. But your comment about overlaying Herrmann scores onto Lumet's film strikes me as nonsensical. Those scores were crafted for those specific films. Do you feel that all Herrmann scores sound the same?

by Anonymousreply 352Last Thursday at 9:02 AM

No, r352, but Herrmann's comment that it's a "train of death" leads me to believe that's how he'd approach it. If he approached it in a lighter vein -- say, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir -- it could work.

by Anonymousreply 353Last Thursday at 9:05 AM

Albert Finney is very good (as a gay guy) in 1994's A Man of No Importance (free on Tubi).

by Anonymousreply 354Last Thursday at 9:40 AM

One thing tat always bothered me about the original story and the film, as well. The kidnapping, as it was somewhat based on the Lindbergh baby case, has always seemed a classic American story, based on a great American myth. The Armstrong family lived in America.

But very few of the characters who interacted with the victims and committed murder on their behalf were Americans. And they didn't live with the Armstrong family in America. So I find it odd and disingenuous that they could be so emotionally overwrought about the murders.

Am I making sense? Does the original novel make more sense of the relationships?

by Anonymousreply 355Last Thursday at 11:56 AM

Too bad Agatha wasn't around to write a novelization of the JonBenet story.

by Anonymousreply 356Last Thursday at 12:00 PM

r355: after Daisy Armstrong was kidnapped and murdered, Mrs. Armstrong died in childbirth (and the child died as well), then Colonel Armstrong committed suicide, as did Paulette Michel, the French maid who came under suspicion. The connections:

Mrs. Hubbard - American mother of Mrs. Armstrong, grandmother of Daisy

Countess Helena Andrenyi - American sister of Mrs. Armstrong, aunt of Daisy

Count Andrenyi - Hungarian husband of Helena, brother-in-law of Mrs. Armstrong, uncle of Daisy

Mary Debenham - English secretary to Mrs. Armstrong

Colonel Arbuthnot - friend of Colonel Armstrong (who is English, not American)

Princess Dragomiroff - Russian godmother of Mrs. Armstrong

Hector McQueen - American son of the DA prosecuting the Armstrong case

Cyrus Hardman - American detective who had fallen in love with Paulette

Antonio Foscarelli - Italian chauffeur for the Armstrong family

Greta Ohlsson - Swedish nurse for Daisy

Hildegarde Schmidt - German cook for the Armstrongs

Masterman - English valet for Colonel Armstrong

Pierre Paul Michel - French father of Paulette

by Anonymousreply 357Last Thursday at 12:11 PM

I was typing out a similar post, R357. Thanks for saving me doing the rest of it.

Note also that Hector McQueen was in love with Sonia Armstrong; otherwise, his connection to the case is rather tenuous.

by Anonymousreply 358Last Thursday at 12:13 PM

The international flavor of the Armstrong household is excellent misdirection early on. Thirteen people from such varied backgrounds don't seem to have anything in common at first, but once you realize they are all related to, worked for, or were friends with the Armstrongs, it makes perfect sense.

by Anonymousreply 359Last Thursday at 12:17 PM

It makes sense on the surface, but the net is cast VERY wide. For so many people even mildly associated with the Armstrong family to have a shared identical thirst for vengeance is too pat.

And Daisy is a cipher. Though the characters have a theoretical emotional connection to her, the audience does not,.

by Anonymousreply 360Last Thursday at 12:29 PM

I'd agree that ALL of the servants feeling murderous is a bit of a stretch, but not close friends and family members.

by Anonymousreply 361Last Thursday at 1:20 PM

I believe that in the book, the Armstrongs are British, and Linda Arden may be as well. Yes, the Lindberg Baby story happened in the US, but if I'm right and Christie moved it to the UK and changed some of the details... well that was gracious, considering that the Lindbergs were both still alive when the book came out, and didn't need to be reading about their fictional dopplegangers dying of a broken heart and suicide (respectively).

As for the idea that all the servants would want to join in a revenge plot, well, that certainly wouldn't be true of everyone who employed servants! Ya think the servant of the Trumps or the Kardashians would kill to avenge them or their innocent children? But that's what makes the whole Armstrong story more tragic, the love that is shown these characters is highly unusual, it makes the audience think that the tragedy is far larger than the death of an innocent child, that two genuinely lovely and innocent adults died as well - same for Paulette the deceased maid. Christie knew her stuff.

by Anonymousreply 362Last Thursday at 2:13 PM

I watched it again last night because of this thread. Michael York in that ridiculous hairdo is so queeny in it it's almost hard to believe. Bacall, whose typical cuntiness I despise, is surprisingly touching at the end. But Finney, what a performance. Absolutely flawless.

I kept wondering what it must have been to be there like during the shooting of the lengthy reveal sequence. It is truly an astounding moment in cinema in terms of the casting of all those enormous stars on the same set at the same time for what must have been days of filming. I can't think of any other film that come close to this in that respect.

by Anonymousreply 363Last Thursday at 2:54 PM

In terms of all the men's hairstyles, remember that the film was shot in 1973/74, a low point in the ugliness of men's hairstyling.

In spite of the attempt at veracity to the period, hair is always the giveaway to the aesthetic of the period in which a film is designed. Some of the men look good - Sean Connery in his toupee, in particular, and Tony Perkins' trimmed look is not bad though he has almost a crew cut. But Finney's hair (his own, dyed black) is way too long at the nape.

by Anonymousreply 364Last Thursday at 3:11 PM

The women's hair is more authentic to the period than the men's, which is unusual, particularly as they were only a few years away from the years in which all women in all historical films were given bouffants.

Redgrave and Bergman have perfect early 1930s cuts and look just fab in them, Bacall's look is more 1940s. But pity the poor hairdresser who tried to get Lauren Bacall to either shorten her hair, or put it in a bun.

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by Anonymousreply 365Last Thursday at 3:25 PM

Atrocious women's hair and make up is the Ascot Scene from My Fair Lady. It wasn't like that at all onstage.

by Anonymousreply 366Last Thursday at 3:30 PM

R355 I'm surprised the Lindbergh family didn't sue Christie in 1934 for the unnecessary pain of using their 1932 kidnapping trauma for her little story.

by Anonymousreply 367Last Thursday at 3:33 PM

The story is different enough that I doubt they could sue: She changed the country to England, Col. Armstrong wasn't a famous pilot, and the Armstrongs both died while the Lindberghs survived.

by Anonymousreply 368Last Thursday at 3:37 PM

[quote] the Armstrongs both died

That would annoy me even more.

by Anonymousreply 369Last Thursday at 3:56 PM

[quote] Redgrave and Bergman have perfect early 1930s cuts and look just fab in them

R365 I've just spent 5 minutes on Google and now I know the difference between a Bob, a Marcel, and a Shingle.

by Anonymousreply 370Last Thursday at 4:47 PM

R14, R262, R270 I have discovered another link in this movie cast with old pals.

This play in 1977 and '78 was Ingrid's last. I couldn't find an attractive picture of the cast because they were all unflattering.

It was a talkfest by Norman Charles Hunter (who I assume was homosexual).

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by Anonymousreply 371Last Thursday at 5:01 PM

The Bennett score for MotOE is superb. The studio heads did not want the entire score to be dark and doomy: they already had the great opening sequence to establish that (and Bennett's music for that sequence is brilliantly dissonant and terrifyingly atmospheric).

They wanted to attract people to the theaters to see this by evoking the glamour and elegance of a luxury train for wealthy cosmopolitan travelers in the 1930s, and to reflect the special glamour of their all-star cosmopolitan cast. and that's exactly what they got from Bennett.

I love Bernard Herrmann, but he is not some sort of infallible oracle.

by Anonymousreply 372Last Thursday at 5:10 PM

I adore Bernard Herrmann's music but a steam engine does NOT move in waltz time which is 28 to 30 bars per minute.

by Anonymousreply 373Last Thursday at 5:20 PM

Agreed, r373. Strange choice.

by Anonymousreply 374Last Thursday at 5:28 PM

Richard Rodney Bennett's friend (and fellow composer) Daryl Rusnwick wrote this perceptive appreciation when Bennett died in 2012:

Richard Rodney Bennett could hardly have designed his career better to alienate critics in every one of the fields he was so talented in. Classical critics disdained him as a jumped-up film composer, jazzers – players and critics alike – wrote him off as a cabaret artist, and film producers only turned to him when they wanted something self-consciously "highbrow". His jazz was indeed very old-fashioned: he fell in love with the hybrid Basie/Mel Tormé style of the 1950s when he was young, and took no account of later developments. But in everything he did he was a consummate craftsman and within the styles he espoused his works have enormous content and emotional punch.

He was a cultured gay man and every aspect of his creativity was defined by elegance. He would not go for strong avant-garde statements in any genre – it was contrary to his very core. He wanted, and achieved, a refined style in both his music and his life: that is why he went to New York, and was so happy there.

by Anonymousreply 375Last Thursday at 5:42 PM

The Christie story must also locate the Armstrong family as living in America because Mary Debenham, British secretary to young Mrs. Armstrong (Vanessa Redgrave), is exposed by Poirot as someone who's spent a lot of time in America and uses the term "long distance" instead of "trunk call."

It's a big plot point.

by Anonymousreply 376Last Thursday at 5:56 PM

Christie borrowed another well-known tragedy for another mystery:

In June 1943, while pregnant with her first child, actress Gene Tierney came down with German measles, contracted during her only appearance at the Hollywood Canteen. Congenital rubella syndrome was passed on to the baby. Little Daria was born prematurely, weighing only 3 pounds, 2 ounces, and requiring a total blood transfusion. The infant was deaf, partially blind with cataracts, and severely developmentally disabled. The child ultimately was institutionalised in a psychiatric hospital.

About two years after the child was born, Tierney was approached by a female fan for an autograph at a garden party. The fan revealed that during World War II, she had sneaked out of quarantine while sick with German measles to visit the Hollywood Canteen and meet Tierney. This incident, as well as the circumstances under which the information was imparted to the actress, is similar to the background to character of film star Marina Gregg and starting point of The Mirror Crack'd.

by Anonymousreply 377Last Thursday at 6:20 PM

How could Ratchett / Cassetti be oblivious of the imminent threat? The Armstrong story was probably the greatest story of the year. So many relatives of Daisy Armstrong were celebrities, the count and countess, the princess, the actress. Ratchett must have known and recognized at least some of these faces on the train.

by Anonymousreply 378Last Thursday at 6:25 PM

Did Gene Tierney coming down with German measles lead to her mental breakdown?

by Anonymousreply 379Last Thursday at 6:27 PM

Excellent point, r378!

For that matter, Poirot would have recognized many of them and knew something of their true history (I'm looking at you Michael York and Jackie Bisset!).

by Anonymousreply 380Last Thursday at 6:28 PM

I't's discussed on the DVD extras, r350, as to why they chose sweeping and romantic over a more typical suspense score.

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by Anonymousreply 381Last Thursday at 6:41 PM

[quote]r367 I'm surprised the Lindbergh family didn't sue Christie in 1934 for the unnecessary pain of using their 1932 kidnapping trauma for her little story.

Weren't they busy collecting the Iron Cross from Hitler at the time?

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by Anonymousreply 382Last Thursday at 6:59 PM

Lindbergh had a very active life after1932.

He was involved almost everywhere— including ideas like making America great again.

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by Anonymousreply 383Last Thursday at 7:04 PM

... fathering seven children from three women in Germany among others. Two of the women were sisters. But that's more a Jackie Collins novel than Agatha Christie.

by Anonymousreply 384Last Thursday at 7:17 PM

"Getting Lucky on the Orient Express"

by Anonymousreply 385Last Thursday at 7:19 PM

R383 I don't know how Billy Wilder could expect that fresh-faced young man at R383 to be portrayed by that old dog Jimmy Stewart.

by Anonymousreply 386Last Thursday at 7:20 PM

[quote]r383 Lindbergh had a very active life after1932. He was involved almost everywhere— including ideas like making America great again.

Yeah - his idea of making America great was keeping us out of WWII and letting poor, raped Europe fend for itself.

SUCH a hero!

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by Anonymousreply 387Last Thursday at 7:21 PM

^ Just like Woodrow Wilson.

by Anonymousreply 388Last Thursday at 7:24 PM

How did long distance trains like this work back then as far as restrooms and showers and water usage? The first class cabins look like they have a small sink in them but I can't imagine a train could carry that much water as water is quite heavy to transport.

There also don't seem to be that many passenger cars on that train. The exterior shots have the locomotive, the fuel/coal car, and what look like maybe 3 passenger cars. That's not a lot of space considering one of those cars has to have room for a bar, restaurant and then luggage/cargo space at the back of train I assume.

The modern luxury trains have WAAAAY more cars.

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by Anonymousreply 389Last Thursday at 8:19 PM

A few awkward moments as the staff are trying to do their job but are blocked by the camera and woman asking questions but some nice views!

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by Anonymousreply 390Last Thursday at 8:29 PM

[quote] How could Ratchett / Cassetti be oblivious of the imminent threat? The Armstrong story was probably the greatest story of the year. So many relatives of Daisy Armstrong were celebrities, the count and countess, the princess, the actress. Ratchett must have known and recognized at least some of these faces on the train.

Hungarian counts and countesses are rarely celebrities; nor were elderly minor Russian princesses.

The actress was the only real celebrity: but she was a theater celebrity, and it's unlikely Ratchett / Cassetti would have been much of a theater fan: "Wait! I recognize that woman in the car! She was simply divine as Shakespeare's Rosalind!"

by Anonymousreply 391Last Thursday at 9:00 PM

"Ratchett must have known and recognized at least some of these faces on the train."

Well, the whole plot is goofy if you think about it. How to get that many people from that many nations to one spot on the globe on short notice, when most of them have jobs and international travel took weeks? Sure, they had a spy in the enemy's camp who could tell them where Ratchett would be and when, but how to get 12 people into one train car on short notice... particularly as there was a whole world of other people who wanted to travel on that train? No, having a conductor in on it wouldn't be enough, they'd need to suborn the reservations office as well!

As for Ratchett recognizing his enemies, there was a decent chance he recognized the Countess, who was known to be Mrs. Armstrong's sister-in-law, but she was no threat and her husband was obviously an idiot, and neither gave any sign of being onto him. And well, that vulgar Mrs. Hubbard may have looked a bit like some stage actress he'd seen once, but Linda Arden was a glamorous invalid and nothing like this flyover vulgarian. As for the rest... how the hell would he recognize a collection of ex-servants or their relatives, friends who weren't public figures, and neighbors? Of course Poirot knew that the Princess and the actress were best pals, but Poirot was the kind of eldergay who'd be up on all the theater gossip, and Ratchett wasn't.

by Anonymousreply 392Last Thursday at 10:49 PM

Did Tony Perkins make a pass at York, Connery, Finney or any of the other male members of the cast? Excluding the clucking fossil Gielgud, of course.

by Anonymousreply 393Last Thursday at 11:43 PM

Richard Rodney Bennett's score was a pastiche of commercial salon music which was perfect for the period and the characters. It had a last revival in the 70s when the film was made. I suppose only us eldergays get it. It's perfect and wonderful in context. Who today gets the context of a 70s film set in the 30s?

by Anonymousreply 394Yesterday at 1:21 AM

[quote]Ratchett must have known and recognized at least some of these faces on the train.

He did, which is why he tried to hire Poirot to protect him. It's heavily implied that the death threats Ratchett mentioned were only part of his concern, and that he recognized some people on the train. That's most clear in the Suchet version I believe. It's been so long since I read the book that I can't remember how clear it is in the novel or not.

by Anonymousreply 395Yesterday at 3:44 AM

Luxury trains during that time period would have had shared toilets and showers. I believe the book mentions an unknown woman in a dragon-printed dressing gown making her way down the hall to the bathroom. It's a false clue for Poirot.

These days, the most luxurious train cars have en suite bathrooms, but that was an unheard-of luxury in the 30s. Even the very wealthy would have shared unless they were SO wealthy they could afford their own private train car, but that would have been rare.

by Anonymousreply 396Yesterday at 5:03 AM

It's quite possible that a very old woman like Princess Dragomiroff would have used a chamber pot that her maid would have emptied down the hall in the loo. Her maid might even give her a sponge bath so that she didn't have to share bathing facilities. People bathed less then, anyway.

by Anonymousreply 397Yesterday at 5:05 AM

I agree that there were plot holes, but the book mentions that all the berths on the train car had been sold out weeks in advance: Mrs. Hubbard probably booked them. This was unusual enough that it's commented on by Poirot's train executive friend, as there were usually plenty of berths on that particular route.

Pierre, as a Wagon Lit conductor, would also have been useful at keeping strangers off the train. There is even a fake booking to take up the last empty berth. When that person doesn't arrive because he doesn't exist, Poirot's executive friend insists that Pierre give Poirot the berth. Pierre is clearly put out by this but has to do as he is told. That and the unexpected snowbank which stops the train is what fucks up the plan. Otherwise, it was reasonably well-thought-out.

Presumably, Mrs. Hubbard saw to it that everyone could travel internationally and be on that train car on time. She probably booked the fares and bought the tickets. That, to me, is the most silly part of the whole plot: It would have been cheaper, easier, and safer to simply hire an assassin to shoot Ratchett in the head some years ago.

by Anonymousreply 398Yesterday at 5:10 AM

People wouldn't have expected or taken full baths/showers when traveling on a train in the 1930s. The would have taken bird baths at the sink and still considered it luxurious.

by Anonymousreply 399Yesterday at 5:19 AM

It would have been much less satisfying to them without the ceremonial aspect, r398.

by Anonymousreply 400a day ago

What would have happened after they all went their separate ways eventually? Were all twelve of them going to keep such a big secret for the rest of their lives? What if Greta had been overcome by guilt and confessed to someone? What if Hildegarde had tried to blackmail the Princess or Linda Arden? There should have been a sequel with Linda plotting how to eliminate everyone else apart from her daughter.

by Anonymousreply 401a day ago

Agree with R400. It was an exorcism.

by Anonymousreply 402a day ago

Ken Ludwig wrote a stage adaptation of MotOE -- I saw it once at a regional theater. It was OK, but definitely not as good as the movie versions. It eliminates several characters (the Princess's maid, Foscaraelli, the Count, the detective) and streamlines some plot points. And of course if you have already seen the movie or read the book, there's not much suspense.

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by Anonymousreply 403a day ago

[quote]That, to me, is the most silly part of the whole plot: It would have been cheaper, easier, and safer to simply hire an assassin to shoot Ratchett in the head some years ago.

Again, as people keep saying, they wanted to kill him themselves. They wanted to see him dead, mutilated in a ceremonial assassination, with the added benefit of being absolutely sure he was dead and not wondering the rest of their lives if the hit man really did his job or not.

by Anonymousreply 404a day ago

Good thing that Pierre was employed by the train company and assigned to the Orient Express when Ratchett was booking passage. Gotta hand it to the master mind: This execution was plotted very well.

by Anonymousreply 40521 hours ago

Also remember, Linda Arden was a big Drama Queen.

And Ken Ludwig is a big hack! I can't believe the Christie estate was so careless as to entrust the rights to a stage adaptation.

by Anonymousreply 40621 hours ago

r406, Murder on the Orient Express entered the public domain in 1996, so they didn't have any say.

by Anonymousreply 40721 hours ago

I'll make it a musical: you know what I can do with express trains!

by Anonymousreply 40821 hours ago

R397 a chamber pot in a tightly enclosed small cabin?! I hope they would at least open a window. And then maid has to carry it down the hall to a bathroom. Ugh!

by Anonymousreply 40920 hours ago

Well, that's why ladies traveled with maids--so they wouldn't have to empty their own chamber pots.

by Anonymousreply 41020 hours ago

Down the hall to the bathroom? What do you think windows are for?

by Anonymousreply 41120 hours ago

I was watching a documentary on the history of the home, and the episode on bathrooms said that many older women preferred chamberpots and a wash table even after indoor plumbing was available in their homes (this would have been the late 19th or very early 20th century). Early plumbed bathrooms were very clinical-looking, they were usually unheated, and en suite bathrooms were unheard of, so they weren't private. Ladies preferred the comfort of their cozy bedrooms with big fireplaces--they could even bathe in them once the maid brought up enough hot water and filled a tub in front of the fire. The maid also got to empty the chamberpot and washbasin, of course.

Many aristocratic homes of the early 20th Century still didn't have central plumbing: Who needed it when you had all those servants to carry water and clean pots? They only gave in after WWI, when servants became in short supply. Chamber pots didn't entirely go away until the middle of the 20th Century: My great-grandmother lived in the countryside and the bathroom was a privy out back. She had a chamberpot to use at night, as the old lady didn't want to go downstairs and outside in the dark.

To sum up: Princess Dragomiroff, who was supposed to be in her 80s in the early 30s, would have no problem using a chamberpot on a train and would prefer it to sharing a toilet with the rest of the first-class passengers. Her loyal maidservant would have been quite used to taking care of her mistress's bodily functions. That was her job.

by Anonymousreply 41220 hours ago

I'm just trying to picture the Princess Dragomiroff crouching over a chamber pot as she scrapes up all those layers of petticoats, skirts, veils and black lace. And then she'd still have to unbutton and unhook her pantelets and wriggle them down to her knees. And what of her stocking suspenders??

Was she handed scented papier toilette by the German lady? Did she swipe forward or backward?

by Anonymousreply 41318 hours ago

I'm trying not to picture that, R413, but you do you.

by Anonymousreply 41418 hours ago

In the book, Mrs. Hubbard mentions her sponge bag on a couple of occasions. That was a toiletry bag holding soap, shampoo, etc. that you took with you to a shared bathroom--kind of like the shower caddies college students living in dorms use. That indicates the Orient Express had shared toilets and showers. Makes the whole thing a little less romantic now, huh?

by Anonymousreply 41518 hours ago

Presumably the women traveling without maids -- everyone other than the old princess -- either used the shared bathroom or just shat their undergarments and just sprayed themselves with lots of perfume to mask the smell.

Did the countess travel without her maid?

by Anonymousreply 41617 hours ago

Only on DL would a thread about a film turn into a discussion about women pooping and peeing and taking sponge baths - or not...

by Anonymousreply 41717 hours ago

It does make you think about how uncomfortable life would have been back then. We take for granted conveniences even the wealthy didn't enjoy, like en suite bathrooms.

by Anonymousreply 41817 hours ago

R417, Frances McDormand and Viola Davis for a remake of Orient Express. They will both be willing to film scenes showing them taking a dump, peeing, cleaning themselves and even make it look sexual (well, at least St Viola would).

by Anonymousreply 41917 hours ago

People back then didn't care so much about peeing and pooping.

by Anonymousreply 42017 hours ago

Were Arbuthnot and Debenham fucking on the train? Or was Debenham a chaste spinster who would not give it up until the ring was on her finger?

by Anonymousreply 42117 hours ago

The way Vanessa Redgrave played the character, R421, they were definitely already fucking.

by Anonymousreply 42216 hours ago

Yeah, she and Connery played those roles like two people desperately hot for each other.

by Anonymousreply 42316 hours ago

R14, R262, R270, R371 Another link--

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by Anonymousreply 42416 hours ago

It doesn't matter how luxurious these trains were, I wouldn't want to be on one and have irritable bowel syndrome or some such malady.

by Anonymousreply 42516 hours ago

Where would you prefer your irritable bowel to flare up, r425?

by Anonymousreply 42616 hours ago

I learned about Murder on the Orient Express from this thread and I'll finish it tonight. I have downloaded Evil under the Sun for comparison.

by Anonymousreply 42716 hours ago

Evil Under the Sun is played pretty much for humor, r427.

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by Anonymousreply 42816 hours ago

Expect Evil Under the Sun to be much more campier and bitchy than MotOE. I loved it!

by Anonymousreply 42915 hours ago

Greenlighting this movie - without today's hindsight - was quite remarkable considering the previous movies of Christie's material. Christie movies were not exactly audience magnets before 1974. The last movies before, in the 60s, were rather low budget. There were the great-in-their-own-way but not serious Rutherford movies, a sorry attempt of a Poirot movie with Tony Randall (!), a handful Indian Agatha Christie movies, then nothing. And then MotOE. It must have taken a lot of guts to greenlight a high budget all-stars-ensemble movie that plays almost entirely on a train.

by Anonymousreply 43014 hours ago

"That, to me, is the most silly part of the whole plot: It would have been cheaper, easier, and safer to simply hire an assassin to shoot Ratchett in the head some years ago."

Yeah, it would have been far easier for Linda Arden and her son-in-law to shoot the fucker a few times, after McQueen opened the back door of a rented house somewhere. They'd have no trouble pulling the triggers, and leaving behind some appropriate clues for the police!

But that would have left out a lot of people who also wanted revenge and who would have been happy to pull the trigger, half of them had police or military experience and knew how to handle a gun. And it wouldn't have been as dramatic as pulling in twelve accomplices, even if they had to take the risk of including the totally unreliable Greta. You just can't trust a religious fanatic with a guilty conscience.

by Anonymousreply 43114 hours ago

[quote] Rachel Roberts, whose only claim to fame is to have swallowed a bottle of ammonia …walking throug a glass wall…

Dear R285, an American might say that.

And while I'm no particular fan of hers I recognise she was part of the so-called 'British New Wave'/'Angry Young Men'/Kitchen Sink Drama/Raw Sex Scene which swept through British films and theatre at the beginning of the 60s.

She was performing 'Raw Sex' with Albert Finney in 'Saturday Night and Sunday Morning' in 1960 and with Richard Harris in 'This Sporting Life' in 1963.

This 'British New Wave'/'Angry Young Men'/Kitchen Sink Drama/Raw Sex Scene killed the careers of many traditional theatre performers and homosexuals like Coward, Rattigan, Novello and Binkie Beaumont etc.

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by Anonymousreply 43211 hours ago
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