A famous title remastered, Murder on the Orient Express adapted into modern cinema has the potential to be enthralling. Like the 1974 original, the cast is assembled with A-list names. The likes of Sean Connery and Albert Finney are exchanged with talents such as Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz. So in terms of performances, the upcoming murder mystery has a steady arsenal of ammunition.
Kenneth Branagh directs and features as Hercule Poirot, “probably the greatest detective in the world”. Naturally the adaptation will reference largely Agatha Christie’s famous novel. However, writer Michael Green will offer his own unique style to the story. Green’s been involved in the writing team on several blockbusters. Such include Logan, Alien: Covenant and Blade Runner 2049, so for a movie where screenplay is as crucial as it is for Murder on the Orient Express, a finely structured plot should deliver.
Joining Depp and Cruz are a fascinatingly diverse mix of actors and actresses. Daisy Ridley (Star Wars), Michelle Pfeiffer (Scarface), Judi Dench (Skyfall), Josh Gad (Frozen) and Willam Dafoe (Spiderman) are to name a few. A congregation of such a dissimilar group of characters displays how unpredictable and volatile a move experience this picture could offer.
It is, of course, very possible that Murder on the Orient Express is a money maker and little else. A strong cast and a famous director will inevitably draw the crowds.
The trailer is the typical blockbuster trailer, though it does promise some interesting filmmaking. A long tracking shot down through a carriage introduces every member of the cast, each one as suspicious and untrustworthy as the last. Branagh also seems to be playing with colour in this upcoming movie. The pale whites of the snow and mist against the jet black of the train suggest that the film will be a spectacle if nothing else.
It is one to look forward to. Whether it really has any substance as a film will be revealed with time. But, regardless, it has the promise to be a good watch.
Murder on the Orient Express will be released 3rd November 2017.