And Then What?

Charles Aznavour in And Then There Were None (1974)

A group of people who have never met find themselves invited to an isolated hotel in the middle of a desert. As they sit down to dine they try to make sense of why they specifically have been invited only to have their discussions interrupted by a recording which states that each of the guests are guilty of committing a crime but having gotten away with it. But as the hours pass there numbers drop as one by one they turn up dead having been murdered in various ways. Realising that one of them must be the murdered the guests try to get to the bottom of things, tentively forming alliances with each other.

3 things struck me as I watched "And Then There Were None", the first of which is the location they have chosen is impressive. I am not sure whether the movie was actually shot in the glorious building we get outside shots from or not but the combination of the exteriors and interiors create this grand building with various areas who give different tones to the movie. From the danger of the exterior relics and columns to the shadows of a pillared cellar it grabs your attention.

Attention grabbing is what you get from the cast as we have so many recognizable stars with some giving highly engaging performances. Scenes involving Richard Attenborough and Herbert Lom are for me where the movie is at its best as there is playfulness to their dialogue. Unfortunately not all the performances are as noteworthy and Charles Aznavour feels like he was cast purely to attract his fan base and so we have a scene where he gets to sing his song "The Old Fashioned Way".

But then there was the third thing which stuck me about "And Then There Were None" and that was quite simply that the whodunit plot ended up not keeping my attention. It is a case that this adaptation of Agatha Christie's story ended up a visual movie, reliant on the looks and the cast rather than the story.

What this all boils down to is that "And Then There Were None" is still an okay movie with a style which is quite entertaining. But it is certainly not the best adaptation of Christie's novel.

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