Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh) and his giant cartoon-like mustache return for another exotic murder mystery in the newest star-studded Agatha Christie adaptation, Death on the Nile.
This time around, Poirot’s Egyptian vacation turns into a twisty whodunnit when a picture-perfect couple’s (Gal Gadot and Armie Hammer) honeymoon is cut short.
To put it mildly, I was very letdown by 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express, so I didn’t expect much from Branagh’s follow up.
However, I am please to share that I was certainly more entertained this time around. You know like MJ said in Spider-Man: No Way Home, if you expect disappointment, you will never be disappointed”.
Branagh’s direction is glossy, glitzy and super campy despite its serious screenplay (we can’t say the delivery of the screenplay was performed seriously, but we’ll let that go). Imagine The Great Gatsby in the deserts of Egypt, with a murder mystery woven throughout and an earnest origin behind his mustache. Something I didn’t know I needed until today.
I felt that the mystery itself was a wee predictable, but I enjoyed the twists and turns it took to get there. It’s also faithful to Christie’s novel, so Christie readers can rejoice.
Otherwise, Branagh does a fantastic job once again walking in the big shoes — or should I say big ‘stache —of the methodically, clever Poirot. He is the shining star that keeps the cast afloat on this murder cruise.
And well, for those who aren’t away this film’s ensemble features some semi-problematic leads — cannibals, anti-vaxxers and the mastermind behind the “Imagine” video. I admit, I’m a little shocked 20th Century Fox (now owned by Disney) didn’t at least try to CGI Armie Hammer into someone who isn’t sexually abusing women.
And honestly despite keeping the original cast didn’t enhance the film at all. Everyone was pretty lackluster. Even Annette Benning, who is pretty tremendous in everything.
Honestly, if your looking for a popcorn flick with pretty costumes and a fun “whodunnit”, you won’t be disappointed.
Final Thoughts: Death on the Nile won’t make you wish you drank enough champagne to fill the Nile, but don’t expect anything spectacular.