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Death on the Nile is a misfiring killer thriller

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Film review: Death on the Nile (12A), The Light Cinema, out now

Cast: Kenneth Brannagh, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Annette Bening, Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French, Russell Brand, Tom Bateman.

Running time: 2hrs 7mins Director: Kenneth Branagh

Death on the Nile (54645844)
Death on the Nile (54645844)

Following on from his recent triumph with semi-biopic Belfast, Kenneth Branagh directs and stars in this version of the 1937 Agatha Christie thriller.

Brannagh has assembled an all-star cast, too, for the Hercule Poirot detective drama, but somehow it just doesn’t work.

We first meet Poirot as a young man in World War I and are given a back story not previously afforded to the Belgian sleuth.

His subsequent battlefield injury explains his exuberant moustache and, although not pivotal to the plot, at least gives a bit more depth to the man himself.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the rest of the cast - who are assembled rather like Cluedo characters, with no real meat on the bones of their personalties.

The main story starts with Poirot seemingly on vacation in Egypt, although we later discover he is on a secret, rather dull, mission.

His path soon collides with wealthy socialite Linnet (Gadot) and her new husband Simon (Hammer), who are celebrating their honeymoon with an extravagant trip around the world.

Poirot’s friend Bouc (Bateman) quickly gives the prissy investigator a number of reasons why people have grievances with Linnet and, as the loving couple board a cruise ship with assembled guests, the killings start.

Admittedly, I had no idea who the murderer was, and the two-and-a-bit hours did go by quickly, so the film was perfectly watchable - just not as good as I’d hoped.

The obvious suspect is soon ruled out for the first death, the second is a mystery and the third committed in front of Poirot himself as we lumber towards the usual dramatic finale.

In true Christie style, all the main suspects are in a room together as our hero reveals his meticulous thought process before unveiling the killer.

And then it’s a flash forward to London six months later and more about that damn silly moustache...

By Jeremy Ransome

Rating: 6/10

Coming up at The Light Cinema, Cromwell Road, from Friday...

Belfast (12A)

Fri, Sat, Sun: 19:40. Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs: 13:30, 16:15, 19:00

Clifford the Big Red Dog (PG)

Fri: 10:30. Sat, Sun: 10:00

Cyrano (12A)

Wed, Thurs: 14:00, 17:00, 20:00

Death on the Nile (12A)

Fri, Sat, Sun: 14:20, 17:20, 20:15. Mon: 13:45, 16:45, 19:45. Tues: 12:30 (subtitled), 15:30, 20:30. Wed, Thurs: 13:15 (silver screening), 16:20, 19:15 (subtitled)

Dog (12A)

Fri: 12:45, 15:15, 17:50, 20:20. Sat: 12:30, 15:10, 16:15 (subtitled), 17:40, 21:00. Sun: 12:30 (autism friendly), 15:00, 16:40, 19:30. Mon, Wed, Thurs: 13:10, 15:40, 18:10, 20:40. Tues: 15:00, 17:40, 20:15

Encanto (PG)

Fri: 10:00. Sat: 10:10. Sun: 10:20

Jackass Forever (18)

Fri, Sat, Sun: 18:20, 20:45. Mon, Wed, Thurs: 13:20, 15:50, 18:15, 20:45. Tues: 13:20, 15:50, 18:15, 20:40

Marry Me (12A)

Fri: 11:40 (baby friendly), 16:15, 19:00. Sat, Sun: 11:40, 16:20, 19:10. Mon, Tues: 13:50, 16:40, 19:20. Wed, Thurs: 13:40, 16:30, 19:20

Sing 2 (PG)

Fri, Sat, Sun: 10:15, 10:45, 11:30, 13:00, 13:30, 14:15, 15:40, 17:00. Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs: 14:10, 16:50

Spider-Man: No Way Home (12A)

Fri: 13:10, 16:30, 20:00. Sat: 12:50, 20:10. Sun: 13:15, 19:15. Mon, Tues: 13:15, 16:30, 19:50. Wed, Thurs: 19:40

The Beatles: Get Back–The Rooftop Concert (12A)

Sat: 19:00. Sun: 17:30. Tues: 13:00, 18:30

Uncharted (12A)

Fri, Sat: 11:10, 12:15, 14:00, 15:00, 16:50, 17:45, 19:45, 20:30. Sun: 11:10, 12:00, 14:00, 14:50, 16:50, 17:45, 19:45, 20:30. Mon, Tues: 14:30, 17:20, 19:30, 20:15. Wed, Thurs: 13:45, 16:40, 19:30

Coming up at The Luxe Cinema,Alexandra Road, from Friday...

Death on the Nile (12A)

Fri 19:30, Sat 16:15, Sun 19:45, Mon 16:30, Tues 9:45, Wed 16.30 subtitled, Thur 24th 19:45

Uncharted (12A)

Fri 16:00, Sat 19:45, Sun 16:15, Mon 19:45, Tues 16:30, Wed 23rd 19:45, Thurs 24th16:30

Sing 2 (U)

Fri 12:45, Sat 13:00, Sun 13:00

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