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Death On The Nile – Movie Review

Death on the Nile in theaters February 11th.

Esteemed Actor-Director Kenneth Branagh follows up 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express with Death on the Nile. It stars Annette Bening, Russell Brand, Ali Fazal, Dawn French, Gal Gadot, and Armie Hammer. It will be in theaters on February 11th 2022.

Synopsis

The peace and tranquility that were temporarily present on the S.S. Karnak are destroyed after one of the passengers is found murdered. Renowned Belgian detective Hercule Poirot is entrusted with the important task of identifying which one of the passengers is the killer before they strike again.

Kenneth Branagh’s performance as world-renowned detective Hercule Poirot is by far the strongest aspect of the film. He portrays a broken man, haunted by tragedy. Being a private detective, solving grisly murders is truly all he has left. Branagh imbues Poirot with layers of sarcastic wit and shrewd deductions that mask the inner trauma that he carries with him everywhere.

Kenneth Branagh Death on the Nile

Director, Branagh has a keen eye for beauty.

The rather by-the-numbers mystery unfolds against the backdrop of gorgeous Egyptian landmarks. The cinematography is wonderful to behold. The imagery of the Great Pyramids and the Great Temple of Abu Simbel are breathtaking and alone worth the price of admission.

The all-star cast deserves praise.

The cast, includes the likes of Wonder Woman herself, Gal Gadot. Also featured are Letitia Wright, Annette Bening, and Russell Brand. Brand surprises in his role as the aristocratic doctor, a modest man so different than his usual roles as the raunchy goofball. However, his character, like many of the others, doesn’t get much in the way of development.

Death on the Nile Cast

Gal Gadot also performs surprisingly well. Usually, her acting is so stilted it seems like she’s just reading the script for the first time. Unlike in her DC film appearances, here she actually emotes, and convincingly portrays a millionaire heiress newlywed who truly wants to patch things up with her estranged friend, played Emma Mackey. Mackey’s performance is as commendable as Branagh’s. She tackles so many different emotions and conflicts and is truly captivating to watch.

Armie Hammer Kenneth Branagh

Armie Hammer as Gal Gadot’s new husband is serviceable and he does have chemistry with both Gadot and Mackey. However, it is difficult to separate his sensual interactions with the actresses and his real-life allegations. It doesn’t ruin the movie though the film may have been more absorbing had his character been played by a different actor.

Verdict

I give the Death on the Nile a 3.5 out of 5 Stars. It is a formulaic whodunit that succeeds thanks to commendable performances and skillful direction by a filmmaker who clearly has a passion for the source material. It’s worth a watch for fans of the genre, and the landmarks look marvelous on the big screen.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
death on the nile poster

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Writer, native Texan, DBZ fanatic, and budding Oscars historian

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