‘Murder Most Foul’ (Film)

‘MURDER MOST FOUL’

Please feel free to comment on my review.

Miss Marple Investigates Mrs. Ginty’s Death

The fourth and final film of the Margaret Rutherford ‘Miss Marple’ series, ‘Murder Most Foul’, is a pretty good entry. However, once again, this is not based on a Miss Marple book by Agatha Christie.

This film is based on the book, ‘Mrs. McGinty’s Dead’, featuring Poirot’s character. I can’t understand why they didn’t base all of the ‘Miss Marple’ films with Margaret Rutherford on ‘Miss Marple’ books.

The film’s title, ‘Murder Most Foul’ also comes from the William Shakepeare play, ‘Hamlet’. Apparently Miss Marple had said the phrase in the second film of this series, ‘Murder At The Gallop’.

This film has Terry Scott…yes he’s in this! Wow! Where’s June Whitfield?…as Police Constable Wells finding barmaid and former actress Margaret McGinty hanged in her house. Why didn’t he stop this?

Well this might have to do with the fact he had a pint whilst on duty. Anyway inside the house, Terry Scott’s character finds McGinty’s lodger, Harold Taylor, caught at the scene and is found guilty here.

During the trial of Harold Taylor days later, everyone believes it to be an open-and-shut case. However, among the jury, there’s one person who disagrees with all this. Guess which person that is.

That’s right. Miss Marple is the jury member who’s convinced that Harold Taylor is innocent. She begins to prove her case, with Mr. Stringer and Inspector Craddock’s assistance throughout the film.

I’ve greatly enjoyed this ‘Miss Marple’ series with Margaret Rutherford. I’m sad it’s come to an end here. They may not be the most faithful film adaptations of Miss Marple, but they’ve been great fun.

I know I’ve said that before in my previous review, but it’s true when you consider some of the modern day film adaptations of Agatha Christie’s works. These are tamer compared to modern ones.

I know how frustrated I sound when I wish they adapted more from Miss Marple’s books than Poriot’s books. But at least we have a version of Miss Marple who seems active compared to other versions.

Again like with the previous film, I had no idea who the murderer was and it one of the actors I recognised from another TV show I’ve seen. It was a complete surprise and made it more delightful.

Speaking of Margaret Rutherford, she delivers an excellent performance as ever as Miss Marple. In this, Miss Marple’s investigations lead her to audition as an actress and to participate in the theatre.

I like how she conducts her investigations early on when posing to take donations for a jumble sale with Mr. Stringer’s help. She also becomes convinced that one of the theatre actors is the murderer.

Stringer Davis, Margaret Rutherford’s real-life husband, returns as Jim Stringer. I found it amusing when Mr. Stringer was running about in shorts when meeting up with Miss Marple and assisting her.

Again, Mr. Stringer helps out with carrying out favours for Miss Marple during her murder investigation. The same is applied to Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell who returns again as Inspector Craddock.

Inspector Craddock is very against Miss Marple taking matters into her own hands with solving a murder investigation, especially after her jury service. As ever, he and she work together in this film.

This film features Ron Moody as actor/manager H. Diffold Cosgood of the repertory Cosgood Players. Ron Moody is known for playing Fagan in the musical film, ‘Oliver!’ He’s so different here. 😀

The film also features James Bolam (who I’ve seen in ‘The Likely Lads’ sitcom series) as actor Bill Hanson. There’s also young-looking Francesca Annis as actress Sheila Upward, Bill Hanson’s fiancée.

There’s also Windsor Davies as Sergeant Brick in this movie. Windsor Davies played Sgt-Major Williams in the BBC sitcom ‘It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’. I was stunned and surprised to see Windsor here.

There’s Alison Seebohm as premonition-prone Eva McGonigall and Maurice Good as George Rowton. Annette Kerr as Dorothy; Neil Stacy as Arthur and Stella Tanner as landlady Flory are in this!

‘Murder Most Foul’ is a great film with Margaret Rutherford’s Miss Marple and a decent way to end this film series. It’s a shame that it ended and there’s only four films, but I enjoyed the twists in this.

This collection of ‘Miss Marple’ films starring Margaret Rutherford is pretty good and very entertaining. The four films have been well-directed by George Pollock and I love the theme music accompanying these four films for Margaret Rutherod’s Miss Marple. These you will definitely enjoy!

They may not be accurate adaptations of Agatha Christie’s work for Miss Marple and most of the stories were originally for Poriot instead of Miss Marple in book form. But Margaret Rutherford stands out well in all four Miss Marple films, since she takes centre stage and isn’t being an observer.

‘Murder Most Foul’ rating – 8/10


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