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The ABC Murders HD online

The ABC Murders  HD online
Language: English
Category: TV Series / Crime / Drama / Mystery / Thriller
Original Title: The ABC Murders
Video type: TV Series
Set in the 1930s, a time when Britain is dangerously divided and suspicion and hatred are on the rise, the story sees Poirot face a serial killer known only as A.B.C. As the body count rises, the only clue is a copy of The ABC Railway Guide at each crime scene. Poirot's investigations are continuously thwarted by an enemy determined to outsmart him. If Poirot is to match his nemesis, then everything about him will be called into question: his authority, his integrity, his past and his identity.

Videos

Series cast summary:
John Malkovich John Malkovich - Hercule Poirot 3 episodes, 2018
Eamon Farren Eamon Farren - Cust 3 episodes, 2018
Michael Shaeffer Michael Shaeffer - Sergeant Yelland 3 episodes, 2018
Rupert Grint Rupert Grint - Inspector Crome 3 episodes, 2018
Conrad McCroddan Conrad McCroddan - Beautiful Young Man 3 episodes, 2018
Freya Mavor Freya Mavor - Thora Grey 3 episodes, 2018
Shirley Henderson Shirley Henderson - Rose Marbury 3 episodes, 2018
Anya Chalotra Anya Chalotra - Lily Marbury 3 episodes, 2018
Andrew Buchan Andrew Buchan - Franklin Clarke 3 episodes, 2018
Tara Fitzgerald Tara Fitzgerald - Lady Hermione Clarke 3 episodes, 2018
Bronwyn James Bronwyn James - Megan Barnard 3 episodes, 2018
Christopher Villiers Christopher Villiers - Sir Carmichael Clarke 3 episodes, 2018
Jack Farthing Jack Farthing - Donald Fraser 3 episodes, 2018
Suzanne Packer Suzanne Packer - Capstick 3 episodes, 2018
Eve Austin Eve Austin - Betty Barnard 3 episodes, 2018
Tamzin Griffin Tamzin Griffin - Alice Asher 2 episodes, 2018
Lizzy McInnerny Lizzy McInnerny - Jenny Barnard 2 episodes, 2018


Reviews: [25]

  • avatar

    Ienekan

    Hastings out. Japp out. Real story out.

    Gore in. Sadomasochism in. Sexual elements in.

    Story altered. Poirot altered. Characters altered.

    Nonsense flashback. Dark. Boring.

    What else do you want? Long praise David Suchet.
  • avatar

    Zicelik

    This is the second Christie novel the BBC have allowed Sarah Phelps to mangle. Adapting a novel as iconic as this means you at least have to stick to the the basic story and characters. But not Phelps, it's like she's in some fugue and just throws the novel out of the window. And no it's not OK for the BBC to do this and still pass it off as an adaptation just to try to get new new fans too lazy to have read the book.

    How can you call it an adaptation when a major character Captain Hastings is just cut out completely? Oh and Inspector Japp dies of a heart attack which never happens in the book because he leads the investigation. Rupert Grints character is really a minor character suddenly given centre stage. Then we have the ridiculous scene of a search warrant against Poirot's house!

    The BBC should from now on warm viewers all future adaptations have nothing to do with Christie's work apart from their titles and are attempts to attract Millennials in as viewers.
  • avatar

    Gholbithris

    Dear Sarah Phelps, please provide me with details of where to send you a copy of THE ABC Murders, as it was clear that you didn't read the text, perhaps you read the Wikipedia page, and got the idea for the story from a few lines. Why put the name of Agatha Christie on something, and give us a Detective that isn't Hercule Poirot, instead of Poirot, we had Officer Crabtree. I studied The ABC Murders at College some years back, and the flavour of the story was simply not there, I would love to know what your thinking was. Where was Captain Hastings? Agatha Christie, I'm sure you are turning in your grave.
  • avatar

    Opilar

    This adaptation contains very little essence of the Christie story or the quintessential hubris of Hercule Poirot. I feel I would have liked it more if it had not pretended to be an Agatha Christie.
  • avatar

    Malodora

    Terrible adaption. Terrible interpretation of Poirot nothing like him. Most of ABC story changed. Constant constant flashback to Poirot's time as a refugee. Malkovich's French accent is appalling Such a grim and depressing adaption
  • avatar

    Topmen

    I won't list the many ways in which this departs from the book. Suffice it to say that if you're going to play fast and loose with the text, the characters and common sense, call it something else.
  • avatar

    Forcestalker

    This dreadful production was advertised as "Agatha Christie's Poirot" - one thing os certain, it certainly wasn't much to do with Christie herself ! If you listen carefully, you can hear her spinning in her grave.

    At kleast here in the UK, TV productions of Christie mysteries - whether MIss Marple or Poirot are deviating widely from the novels since the Christie family sold their rights to America.

    Just a few of the failings of this production :-

    No Inspector Japp - conveniently killed off in the first part of episode 1

    No Captain Hastings at all

    Severe doubts expressed by Scotland Yard as to whether Poirot had even been in the Belgian police - despite this beinmg made clear many times in the novels - he was, at one time, HEAD of the Belgian police

    The mad suggestion that Poirot had oonce been a Catholic priest - he's certainly Catholic but there's no suggestiion anywhere that he had ever been a priest

    A FIFTH murder ?

    Since when does any true adaptation of a Christie story reqiuire warnings about 'adult themes' ? There were some apparently sadomasochistic scenes.

    I, unwisely, watches all three episodes - and wished that I hadnt't. Thankfully, a few days later, I was able to enjoy the excellent Suchet version of The ABC Murders on UK TV.
  • avatar

    The Sphinx of Driz

    One of the great elements of Agatha Christie's writing is the black humour, accessed through her detectives, Poirot and Miss Marley. This series seems to misunderstand Miss Christie completely. Psychobabble, priests and religion as motivation, bizarre plotting then conjoined with direction that was so over the top that it left no room for dialogue and acting. Very bad, very silly, I'm owed three hours please!
  • avatar

    Wiliniett

    Visually, this is a masterpiece. The scenery, the clothes, the props, the awesome English countryside: all wonderful to look at. Everything else is an abomination.

    Malcovich is himself with a funny voice. The three hour long episodes are slow and empty. All the characters mumble incoherently through their lines, requiring the use of subtitles. The story isn't a story at all... just a long drawn out single act of revenge. The achingly painful sound effects and appallingly inappropriate music serve only to confuse and annoy.

    A forgettable steaming pile of poo!
  • avatar

    Tujar

    A dreadful interpretation of an Agatha Christie classic. I have given it 2 stars purely on the quality of the cinematography but the actual writing was utterly shocking.

    I am totally fine with the fact that an adaptation will inevitably not be completely true to the original but this was taking it too far. Not only did they change aspects of the mystery (the story surrounding Cust's fellow residents) but they also erased Japp and Hastings from the storyline. And worse than this- Poirot's personality and background were completely fabricated - why do this?

    If they writers wanted something new and original, why not write something new and original rather than piggybacking on the back of Agatha Christie's popularity and ruining a classic?
  • avatar

    Reighbyra

    I couldn't agree more with the majority of the entries. This series was slow, slow, and slow! And very pretentious. Why ditch the characters of Captain Hastings and Inspector Jupp? Not forgetting the unrelenting political correctness. Just what you would expect from the BBC in its anti-Brexit propoganda. The language used by some of the characters was more 21st Century than the 1930s. A disaster, except for the casting of Rupert Grint, who played Inspector Froome. Well done, Rupert! You've more than proved yourself in an adult role.
  • avatar

    Butius

    After the adaptation of "Ordeal by Innocence" earlier this year, we thought things couldn't get any worse concerning the on-screen rape of Agatha Christie's novels - but, since Sarah Phelps was AGAIN commissioned to write the screenplay for a new adaptation of Dame Agatha's classic "The ABC Murders", we could have guessed... Portentous, pathetic, perverted from beginning to end - and believe it or not, even boring as well! Half of the goings-on were never in the book, least of all the gloomy flashbacks into Poirot's war experiences back in Belgium; the actors are unbelievably bad, the atmosphere is dreary, dark and seedy (in other words, just about everything Agatha's novels never were) - is that supposed to be holiday entertainment?? For HOW LONG is the BBC going to keep allowing Sarah Phelps to violate Agatha Christie's novels and ruin their viewers' Christmas holidays??
  • avatar

    Styphe

    Please don't lose you time with this. Woeful program.
  • avatar

    Ucantia

    There are many things to fault here: Malkovich's Poirot is tiresome. Not once yet has he managed to pronounce the French correctly, and his performance otherwise- whilst intriguing- doesn't really suit the role well enough. Sarah Phelps is up herself. 'And Then There Were None' was really good, but everything she has done since is painful. This entire screenplay screams "written by someone who's terrified of writing dialogue" which any writer will know, is not a good situation to be in. This results in a director/writer duo who are so obsessed with making every shot artsy and pretty (which they are to be fair) that they forget to actually have anything happen in them. This results in an incredibly dreary and excruciatingly slow drama (if you can call it that). Everyone knows by now about all the changes Phelps has made (some kind of make sense but feel unnecessary, others are potentially very problematic, and the rest are simply outright ridiculous). The trick here is that to most it looks artistic, but really it's pretension. Please Sarah. Please just stop. We'll give you the invasion plans, they're on my desk, I'll just go and get them.
  • avatar

    Kefym

    It is extraordinary just how bad the BBC is at doing remakes. Something seems to obsess them with a need to throw away the reasons an original was popular and replace it with drivel. So in this travesty Hercules Poirot is old and ignored. Not just that, but he is a con man who never served in the Belgian police. This is strange, because when he first appeared, in "The Mysterious Affair at Styles" Captain Hastings tells us that they met in Belgium where he was a leading member of the force. It is not clear why Poirot is supposed to have lied about his true identity or why this is brought in at all. But it is an excuse for the British police to be nasty to him and thus give a trendy warning about xenophobia. The basic concept, that one specific murder is being concealed by a chain of murders, is at least maintained. And for those who like steam trains there are some nice locomotive shots. But John Malkovit h's Poirot is a poor thing. Maybe the BBC was intimidated by the existence of a perfectly good version of this already starring David Suchet. But if that is so, why not save the money? This programme alone justifies scrapping the licence fee.
  • avatar

    Sat

    Imagine a deluge of misery. (Take any kind of misery you can think of : financial, moral, intellectual, emotional, medical.) Imagine storms, winds and tides creating a giant surge up the Thames. Now imagine a titanic flood swallowing a large part of the landscape, population included. Screaming people are swept along, battered, drowned by misery. Desperate mothers clutching their babies try to climb into trees, but to no avail : even the trees are swept along. Everywhere there are cataracts of misery, rivers of misery, waterfalls of misery.

    Welcome to "The ABC Murders", which provides the viewer with enough doom and gloom to last him a lifetime.

    This is not what Mrs. Christie intended : her novel contains darkness, yes, but not to the point where one meets a pauper, a prostitute, an unnatural mother, a proto-Fascist agitator or an evil-minded journalist on every page. But then, this is the kind of adaptation which cares very little for the original tone and nature of the source novel.

    By way of Exhibit A I show you the character of Hercule Poirot, which has become nearly unrecognisable. Poirot is given a tragic life history of the kind which would stun even the most sunny or heroic of souls. Gone is the self-confident, brilliant, though sometimes slightly ridiculous detective with the little grey cells. We now get an innocent man scarred for life by wartime inhumanity and cruelty ; an innocent man, too, who has been pushed into a career of deceit, contradiction and subterfuge. Yes, that's our little Hercule there !

    I'm still throwing the series some stars because, in some regards, it is well-crafted : the costumes, for instance, are excellent. There are also fine performances to enjoy, although one gets the impression that the actors (and especially Mr. Malkovich, who is riveting) are seriously wasted on this kind of misbegotten material.
  • avatar

    melody of you

    David Suchet set the bar so high that not many have been able to match his immaculate take on Poirot. But Malkovich hits a new low. As much as I like him as an actor, his Belgian/French accent is missing entirely and comes across just as an idiotic affectation. The style of the show is needlessly over-stylized for the young crowds who might have enjoyed the new Sherlock (I quite liked the first season too before style took over any semblance of substance.) This is a sorry excuse of a drawn out three episode series. The David Suchet episode is available on YouTube and still stands head and shoulders above any other version of ABC Murders.
  • avatar

    Xarcondre

    Firstly this is certainly mostly watchable.

    Secondly I guess I will be downvoted by some since this is likely an adaption that will create a divide between people who love it or hate it, or at least those who like it a lot or not at all, and I am in the middle.

    In short some of the lower reviews are because this is great material, and the lead is a great actor, and yet this is a just a passable say a "fair to good" or what we stateside would call a "C+" to "B-"

    Really does Christie portray the police so badly? (Correct Answer: No.) Would she have so many anachronistic behaviors and character attributes? No. Would she have native Francophone Belgian Poirot speak lousy French? No and Malkovich has impeccable French and seems to have been directed to speak French badly.

    It isn't so much that that the series is terrible, it isn't. It is a) expectations should be high and the end product is mediocre, and b) one senses an intentional distancing from the source material -- which is often ok, but in this case the distancing does not work. This adaption doesn't just have condensations of the material -- it has added quirks and elements that not only are not in the Christie story, but detract from it. They create a different Poirot. Not different as in Suchet vs Malkovich portrayals, but the director/screenwriter vs Christie. EG, the bizarre overlay of immigration themes/controversy is a pointless attempt to score points and doesn't belong in this story. Adding a grittiness, and a literal darkness is not needed either. It seems a fashionable trope now, but there is no need when the original material already has its own texture that the adaptor obfuscates or fundamentally distracts from with their own vision. It is over the top.

    Look I am all for adapting major literary/cultural archetypes, even subverting them -- in what they do and what the moral tale is. It is perfectly OK to tell two completely different morals with Prometheus, Daedalus or Electra and Orestes. Byron can subvert Mill on the former. Homer, Sophocles, Euripides, Graves and Williams can use the latter to very different conclusions. But you don't just take a relatively contemporary character, created by another artist and change their characteristics to the point where they are unrecognizable and their actions are not credible.

    Again, it s a C+ to B-, bring on the downvotes if you must. Oh and turn up the brightness on your screen, for some reason the adaptors think making everything actually dark equals a figurative darkness.
  • avatar

    Quellik

    In order to appear artsy and "edgy" the director filmed everything as if through a dirty lens. Every place was dark and dreary, people are filthy or creepy or both. There doesn't seem to be one redeeming feature anywhere.

    Also, the so-called back story for Poirot is completely unnecessary and in bad taste. What's that?! Is it Dame Agatha spinning in her grave?
  • avatar

    elegant stranger

    That's from Fawlty Towers in case you don't recognize the line but it seemed appropriate here. It's what I imagine Sarah Phelps would say to accusations being (rightfully) made here about her writing.

    Look. Malkovich? Yes, an interesting and worthwhile exploration of how Poirot might be portrayed under the circumstances and given the writing. I can see why some people love him and I can see why others are screaming, "no, no, no!".

    For me it's the rest of it that detracts from what Malkovich is trying to do.

    Pretentious? Yes, indeed.

    Over the top? Ridiculously so.

    Over direction? Absolutely.

    Inexcusable rewriting of the book? Yes, and that's only from what I've seen of episode 1. When was Poirot ever, and I mean EVER, isolated, discredited, shunned etc. etc. Phelps, if you want an isolated, discredit, shunned detective as your star, then feel free to write something from scratch along those lines but don't rewrite the character and development of one of the greatest fictional detectives in history. It's borderline criminal.

    Is killing off Japp absurd? Yes, especially when he appears in later Christie novels for years into the future and was actually the police inspector that was in the original novel. So why change it to Rupert Gint's Chrome? Perhaps so Phelps could justify her approach of making the whole think incredibly dark and isolating Poirot completely. Not needed. Not appreciated. No thank you.

    Is the xenophobic atmospheric too much? Well, it wasn't in the original so why does Phelps add it here? Some sort of reference to Brexit perhaps?

    Is it as bad as last year's Phelps efforts of "Ordeal by Innocence" That would hardly be possible especially since Phelps then completely rewrote much of that novel INCLUDING changing the identity of the killer which was just totally bizarre. Mind you, ,I've still got two episodes to go of this year's so maybe she has rewritten it so that it is ... oh, I don't know ... Inspector Chrome ends up being the killer. Or maybe Poirot himself ends up being accused, thrown in jail, wrongfully convicted, and hung in the closing scenes. I wouldn't put it past Phelps.

    Bottom line? For Malkovich's efforts at doing his best with what he was given: maybe 9 and that would be pushing it. For Phelp's travesty: 1 and that very much in line with everyone else here.

    Please, BBC, can we use somebody else in future for your annual Christie production and put Phelps out to pasture where nobody has to endure her anymore?

    **** I'm adding the following having now watched the second episode.

    The scene with the landlady's daughter walking on Cust's back absolutely unforgivable, unnecessary, added nothing to the plot, not in the original novel and for very good reason, inconsistent with Cust's character in the original novel which is even more important, and I'd go as far as to suggest the product of a disturbed mind who thinks this is what viewers want. It was at this point my wife said something like "this is becoming just completely unpleasant and I don't think I can watch this any more".

    We continued to the end of the episode and were shocked by the complete rewriting of the last 10-15 minutes in which the story heads off in a tangent to the original story.

    I originally gave this a 5 based on episode 1. I'm downgrading it to a 3 after episode 2.

    For the love of God, BBC, please, please get someone else to write your annual Christie stories in future.

    **** Final footnote

    Finally got up the courage to view the 3rd episode. Surprisingly, I thought the first 3/4 of it not too bad, at least when compared to the earlier episodes.

    But ..... the final 10 minutes!! Where the ((*&(*&^&* does the idea that Poirot was a priest in Belgium come from? Who would be so arrogant as to think they can rewrite the most basic part of Poirot's life story so that he wasn't actually a policeman prior to WWI (as in the Christie stories) but something else entirely?

    Phelps shouldn't be allowed within 100 meters of another Christie story again by court restraining order if necessary.

    My final downgrade based on this utterly unacceptable and almost criminal rewriting of history's 2nd most famous detective: now only deserving of a 2.
  • avatar

    Jeronashe

    There is clearly something wrong with modern writers of television dramas and films; they seem to have no original ideas but, instead, keep revisiting the old and trusted stories. Sadly they also insist on attempting to remould these old and trusted tales in a new light. Such is the fate of the new version of "The ABC Murders", an Agatha Christie mystery which involves her famous Belgian sleuth, Hercule Poirot.

    For many years, Poirot was portrayed on television by the brilliant David Suchet; "The ABC Murders" was one of the stories in which he appeared and which was a striking success. For anyone to try to emulate Suchet's portrayal is a monumental task but, to say the least, John Malkovich simply doesn't cut it. Obviously cast to appeal to the American audience, Malkovich has no presence and is almost absent, even from the scenes in which he is meant to dominate. The character of Alexander Bonaparte Cust is an absurdity, with none of the hidden menace which it requires, while the bitty and spasmodic direction does nothing to assist the production.

    Worst of all, the production is a weird amalgam of times. A 1930s story with 1930s settings and costumes is mixed incongruously with dialogue and actions far more suited to the 21st century. This is not what was written by Agatha Christie, nor anywhere near it. The women are feisty and aggressive, their language and behaviour far more appropriate to the current time than the 1930s, while the police are portrayed as the stupid fools so beloved of much modern detective drama. Christie never showed the police to be stupid, just not quite so clever as Poirot.

    After half an hour, I knew it was wrong. By the end of the first episode, I knew I wouldn't be bothering with the other two.
  • avatar

    JOIN

    Two stars for some attempt at the roles.

    But, what a mess was made of the story, the pacing, the total lack of audience involvement.

    It is only Agatha Christie by way of having a character named Poirot. But this Poirot has none of the Poirot character.

    It is not Agatha Christie. It is poorly written rubbish.
  • avatar

    Skyway

    Another travesty from the BBC who seem to have purchased the rights to make Agatha Christie as an act of hatred. If the screen play writer wants to write depressing, grimy crime dramas about a has-been detective then why can't they write something original rather than taking the joy, fun and glamour out of Christie and leaving a pile of festering misery? There was so much added that wasn't in the book that there didn't seem room for what was originally in the book. I know I should stop trying these BBC adaptations but a Christie at Christmas is so tempting that I try again. They're genuinely making me angry with the BBC so I think I've learned my lesson this time. No more.
  • avatar

    Pipet

    4/10 is generous. To begin with, I found John Malkovich had no screen presence, no personality and generally boring. That was before we get to the story which has been changed so much- what was wrong with the original book? Short of plot? Characters? I don't think so. But apparently the screen writers think it would be better to do without Hastings, kill off Japp and add extra, presumed background stories. I gave it a 4 simply because it was nice to see Rupert Grint taking on a mature role and being good enough at it for me to watch him and not immediately think Ron Weasley. I won't be watching the other 2 episodes. I can, however, recommend the audio book read by Hugh Fraser if you don't fancy reading the book.
  • avatar

    Oppebro

    A fine actor like Mr. Malkovich is entirely wasted. 'ABC' (the novel) is a good "smokescreen" mystery, but it's a little hard to find the actual story in endless scenes of... nothing happening. Poirot here is a metaphorical african immigrant, hated by pretty much everybody, insulted and demeaned at every turn. He seethes at... something... endlessly. His supporting characters - put there by one of the greatest detective writers ever - are whisked away as unnecessary (I guess) by a writer from "Eastenders" who seems to think she knows better. The police spend far more time insulting Poirot than policing. Poirot - having solved 9 previous baffling cases (via the list of novels) - is dismissed as being bad for public relations (I guess) and told to bugger off repeatedly. The writer is far more interesting in presenting sledgehammer social-justice metaphors for today ("being relevant" is the phrase used - by people who are general incapable of actual creativity) than telling the story she claims to be telling.

    Having made one of the best interpretations (the Suchet one), the BBC has 'advanced' to the level of the 1965 Tony Randall "the alphabet murders". Pass this one by.