I’ve only started reading Agatha Christie back in 2017 when Sir Kenneth Branagh announced that he will be producing some Hercule Poirot adaptations where he will also play the main character. Murder on the Orient Express is still the best adaptation he has done so far, but A Haunting in Venice is the most recent and I’m still trying to decide if it’s better than Death on the Nile from last year or not. And I think it is. Let me tell you why.
Although A Haunting in Venice is far from the Agatha Christie’s book that inspired the script, it is still more cohesive than the previous Hercule Poirot adventure, Death on the Nile. The book, “Hallowe’en Party”, was released in 1969 and it was my least favourite Hercule Poirot mysteries so far. The name of the characters, the presence of Ariadne Oliver, and the apple bobbing activity at the party were the only things kept from the book. The story is completely different. It’s up to you to decide if this is annoying or not. As an avid reader, I think it bothered me a little bit, but I knew from the trailer that they’ve chosen to go into a totally different direction. I do recommend you checking the book out before watching the movie anyway because it’s Agatha Christie and you won’t be disappointed. Editura Litera is the Romanian publisher where you can find the book or you can enter the contest from the movie distributor’s Facebook page, here, for a chance to win a copy.
I thought the movie was going to be scarier than it was, but I’m happy to report that although it had a few jump scares (all predictable), those were not horror enough to make you want to avoid watching this (speaking for my non-horror fellow lovers). In A Haunting in Venice the audience is brought to Venice (I know, big surprise!) where a retired Hercule Poirot is brought onto a case by his good friend, Ariadne Oliver. Did somebody or someONE kill the victim? Making you question the possibilities with every scene and making you be as confused as Poirot himself, the movie is slightly more than 90 minutes long, but still under 120 minutes like the majority of movies nowadays. And it’s totally worth your while. I am so in love with the aesthetic of all these adaptations that Kenneth Branagh has done. And there are rumours a forth movie in this series is coming. I’m SO ready for it.
Ariadne Oliver: I found something. I’ve looked at it from every which way. I am the smartest person I ever met, and I can’t figure it out, so I came to the second.
Hercule Poirot: You are up to something, my friend.
A Haunting in Venice is in cinemas now.