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A Haunting in Venice Review: Dazzling but Wasted Agatha Christie-Inspired Adaptation

On September 15, Kenneth Branagh’s third performance as Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot will be released in theatres. The sequel to Murder on the Orient Express (2017) and Death on the Nile from the previous year is A Haunting in Venice. International critics have criticized the most recent installment for wasting its great ensemble cast while still being aesthetically opulent.

A good Agatha Christie Adaptation

According to The Wrap’s review, “A Haunting in Venice” is more influenced by Christie’s novel “Halloween Party” than it is an adaptation, unlike Branagh’s previous two Poirot films that were based on Christie’s novels.

A Haunting in Venice

A Haunting in Venice is unquestionably the greatest of Branagh’s three big-screen Christie adaptations, in large part because it is also the most blatantly dishonest, according to the Los Angeles Times, which expressed the same sentiment. Empire continues, “This new strategy of wildly rewriting obscure Christie novels shows real promise.”

A Haunting in Venice: Astounding Appearance

In the words of the New York Times review, “What’s consistent is the elegant visuals — striking cinematography by Haris Zambarloukos — which mark this movie’s real genre as lavish old-fashioned Hollywood entertainment.” A Haunting in Venice is compared to Death on the Nile in The Guardian, which also notes that this movie “does at least look better than its predecessor, which used cheesy digital effects and back-projections to suggest Egypt and the Nile.”

The Disappointment with A Haunting in Venice

A Haunting in Venice Review

According to the Guardian review, the film wastes its stellar cast. With every new Branagh/Poirot film, I’ve sat down for a little guilty-pleasure enjoyment, and he always brings a fundamental level of vivacious energy to the role. But each time, the plodding inertia that develops has left me unimpressed. In this case, it was the false-ending and fake-reveal moments that the film rushed through, as well as the terrible waste of the supporting characters.

According to the NYT review, horror fans may be let down by the movie. It’s a little depressing as a mystery but tame as horror. One problem is that they talk too much. The article claims that Branagh, who experimented with gothic dread early in his career with Frankenstein. It has a better sense for actorly grand guignol than the speed of cinematic-scare scenes. Kenneth Branagh, who also plays the major character in the eerie thriller A Haunting in Venice, is the film’s director. The ensemble cast, which is being produced by 20th Century Studios, features Jamie Dornan, Michelle Yeoh, and Tina Fey.

Previous Agatha Christie Movies Released

Agatha Christie Poirot

“Death on the Nile” (2022) and “Murder on the Orient Express” (2017) are adaptations of Agatha Christie’s famous detective novels. They features her iconic fictional detective, Hercule Poirot, portrayed by Kenneth Branagh. In “Murder on the Orient Express,” Branagh both directed and starred as Poirot. The film, set on a luxurious train, centers around Poirot solving a murder mystery involving a group of passengers. It received mixed reviews from critics but was praised for its visual style and ensemble cast.

“Death on the Nile” (2022) is another Hercule Poirot mystery directed by Branagh. The film features a star-studded cast, including Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, and Annette Bening. In this installment, Poirot embarks on a vacation in Egypt but becomes embroiled in a murder investigation during a Nile River cruise. While reviews for the film were somewhat mixed, Branagh’s portrayal of Poirot and the stunning cinematography were highlighted as strengths.

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