Director: Kenneth Branagh

Starring: Kenneth Branagh, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer

Year: 2022

Maybe Branagh was busy making an actual good movie that he cared about, Belfast, and didn’t have time to invest in making Death on the Nile a success.  Or, maybe more likely, since Murder on the Orient Express was pretty bad, this movie never had a chance in hell.  It’s a Christie mystery, it’s a decadent showcase, it’s a ton of celebrities; we knew what we were getting into when we sat down to watch this film, but maybe we didn’t know exactly how banal it was going to ultimately be.  Kenneth should stick to honest cinema, not this bombast, because it simply doesn’t suit him.

World famous detective Hercule Poirot is on the case again, this time seemingly at random.  He finds himself in Egypt, finds himself invited to a wedding party, finds himself on a stern wheeler headed down the Nile, and then finds himself solving a murder, as an insanely rich person bites the dust and any one of the revelers could be the murderer.  Like a bloodhound on a trail, Poirot takes to the scent, but this time his own failings as a man, his own regrets as a lover, may cloud his judgement and get more than one wealthy aristocrat killed.

First off, I didn’t like Orient, and I’d say that Nile is perhaps slightly better, but not by much.  It’s a little less dumb and forgettable, a little more stylized and beautiful, but that’s where the positives end, really.  They don’t continue with the cast: Branagh, Gadot, Hammer, Letitia Wright, Emma Mackey, Tom Bateman, Annette Bening, Rose Leslie, Russell Brand.  Although, Mackey does shine a bit, she’s the best part, while Bening’s acting and everyone’s fake accents sink the whole boat.  Meanwhile, Gadot wins the medal for Least Believable As A Human; she’s got to be the worst actress working, and it’s just so sad.  She should never be on a screen again, she’s that terrible, but the film didn’t shine despite her, that’s for sure.  It was hectic and pointless, the CGI looked abysmal, and in the end I didn’t care what happened to anyone.  Also, and this is big, because I NEVER try to guess the ending; the ending was so obvious it was insulting.  Maybe Branagh assumed we read/remembered the book, because that’s how it seemed, like he didn’t care to hide the twist because he thought we already knew.  Either way, there’s simply not enough to enjoy and way too much gone wrong, making Death on the Nile like a snake to the heart; cliched and poisonous.

My rating: ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆


By ochippie

Writer, Critic, Dad Columbus, Ohio, USA Denver Broncos, St. Louis Cardinals Colorado Avalanche, Duke Blue Devils