Distinguished by the expert detail that characterizes A&E television mysteries, this exotic, handsome-looking production should satisfy armchair detectives with a fondness for period whodunits.
Detective Hercule Poirot (David Suchet) catches up with his pal Hastings (Hugh Fraser) in Mesopotamia, and hopes to arrange an assignation with a baroness who lives nearby. Poirot's host is archaeologist Eric Leidner (Ron Berglas), whose home is somewhat less than welcoming thanks to his high-strung wife, Louise (Barbara Barnes), who attempts unsuccessfully to conceal her feelings for his partner, Mr. Carey (Christopher Bowen). Then Madame Leidner is found with her skull bashed in; the odd thing is that her corpse is in a locked room whose door and window are clearly visible to outside witnesses. Somehow the killer committed the murder and covered his or her tracks without being seen. Suspects abound, including Miss Johnson (Dina Stabb), who has a crush on her boss, Mr. Leidner; Father Lavigny (Christopher Hunter), who may be an impostor with a sideline in smuggling antiquities; and Joseph Mercado (Alexi Kaye Campbell), who's supporting an expensive drug habit. Even Hastings' nephew and a local constable's daughter fall under suspicion. Sidetracked by the "how" of the case, Poirot takes a while to wonder about the why could Mrs. Leidner's murder be connected to the threatening letters she received from a previous husband, presumed dead? As Poirot investigates, Mercado dies from a drug overdose and Miss Johnson succumbs to a painful poisoning. Before someone else dies, Poirot must stop a madman motivated not by greed or revenge, but by jealousy.
This tale reveals a human dimension to Agatha Christie's legendary stuffed-shirt, Poirot, who ventures to Iraq because he has a crush on a lady. The mystery itself is a complicated affair that stretches credulity; watching Poirot work the the puzzle is far more interesting than actually trying to untangle it.
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- Released: 2001
- Rating: NR
- Review: Distinguished by the expert detail that characterizes A&E television mysteries, this exotic, handsome-looking production should satisfy armchair detectives with a fondness for period whodunits. Detective Hercule Poirot (David Suchet) catches up with his p… (more)