The film is the second of Kenneth Branagh’s Agatha Christie’s mysteries-based movies and a sequel of the movie Murder On The Orient Express. Kenneth acts as the film director, producer and the main renowned character of the books, Detective Hercule Poirot.
First, though the film does not include prominent actors like the first movie, it is more impressive, interesting and convincing. It has indeed the spirit of Agatha Christie’s mysteries. Obviously, the filmmakers got more expertise from the first experience that was not, from my perspective, so blessed as this one.
As narrated in the book, we have the usual type of murder in Agatha’s mysteries that include many suspected persons and consequent murders. The prominent detective Hercule Poirot, the usual character of Agatha’s novels witnesses the murder’s introductions while taking his vacation on the Nile, then is asked by Linnet (Gal Gadot) to prevent her expected murder by finding the suspected murder, especially her rival she knows well that she intends to take revenge after she seduced her lover to take him. The plot is somehow complex, and revealing the climax is far from being direct but if you are a regular reader of Agatha’s books you gradually can expect the murderer as the events go on.
In addition, the backstory of Poirot’s mustache is an innovative and smart addition that Kenneth came up with. It added another dimension to a common and fixed part of all Agatha’s Poirot- based books while on the other part, we have never thought about the origen of all the pride he felt towards his mustache. He turned the mere pride to a weighed big reason with a painful but honorable backstory.
Though this is not the first time portraying the character of Hercule Poirot, Kenneth Branagh performed it uniquely. He reflected deeply the self-confidence Hercule Poirot is known with, and the competence of marking and noticing the least and smallest details. Actually, the character is so tempting to filmmakers to present, and truly Kenneth Branagh was special in portraying it.
Gal Gadot (Linnet Ridgeway) succeeded in charging the viewer with grudge for her character’s traits she portrays even after her murder. She embodied the ugly possessor, greedy personality that makes you not sympathize with her death.
Emma Mackey (Jacqueline) presented perfectly the complex character that profoundly loves, hates and plan murder for the good of her lover and seems a victim to drive everything to where she wants. She used her eyes fervently and professionally and transmitted all the feelings and conflicts that are inside the character to the viewer smoothly with no much talk.
In this sequel, Kenneth Branagh tailored proficiently the layout of the film to present a well-built structure of the story. Scenes flow smoothly. The pace was good and there was no time for boredom. The scenes of the mystery‘s reveal are short and dynamic like sparks. Putting them together and their assembly are smart, dynamic and accomplishing.
Dialogues were short, leading and prepare your mind from every scene to the next one smoothly.
Production sets fit the story time and perfectly simulated Ancient Egypt. In truth, the filmmakers brought Agatha's book to life perfectly, as has always been in my mind. This is one of the rare times that the imagination created by reading is reflected exactly on the screen.
Generally speaking, I loved this sequel and considered it more mature, interesting, rich in a good story, script, direction, production, and presented the professional suspense more than the first film Murder On The Orient Express. It did not rely on the stardom of the actors.
It is obvious that the filmmakers acquired some expertise that enabled them to be more competent in this film and rely on the good script, production, and direction more than the number of superstars taking part in the film. This does not mean producers should not get superstars for their films, but it was an overdose of superstars in the first film with no impressive core or well-structured events, unlike this sequel, it was all about the quality of the film's professional elements.
Definitely, if you like thriller movies, especially if you are a fan of Agatha Christie’s books, you should not miss this movie and will find it interesting and satisfying seeing the mystery that was imagined in your mind performed and portrayed beautifully.