24 September 2013 | GordJackson
A Delightful Romp!
As is well known by now, Dame Agatha Christie was not enamoured of Dame Margaret Rutherford's take on her Jane Marple creation. Fair enough as Dame Agatha had lovingly constructed a plain Jane, spinster/every-woman who, underneath the quiet demeanour and placid knitting possessed a mind sharper than the point of any of her knitting needles. And like television's Columbo she was always under-estimated, to the eventual chagrin of the guilty party in the crime under investigation. As a fan of the BBC/PBS Masterpiece Mystery series I have probably seen most if not all of Dame Agatha's books dramatized, my favourites being those with Joan Hickson whom I find to be the very embodiment of the Jane Marple Dame Agatha originally had in mind. That said, I am not so much of a purist that I cannot enjoy Dame Margaret Rutherford's decidedly non Dame Agatha approach to super sleuth Jane Marple. In short, all four films in the MGM produced series are a pure delight with MURDER AT THE GALLOP just barely edging out MURDER SHE SAID as my personal favourite.
Others have more than adequately provided a synopsis of this and the other trio of Marple movies in the series, so I won't re-till that ground. Suffice to say, if you haven't seen any of them, or you just want a good, light, engaging Brit whodunit then don't miss any of these wonderful confections. I've seen them all many times and yet every repeat showing finds me totally entertained by Dame Margaret, real life hubby Stringer Davis, Charles Tingwell, the excellent casts of supporting players and Ron Goodwin's superb scores. Indeed, they are still as much fun today as when first viewed in their initial theatrical runs back in the sixties.