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Murder Most Foul (1964)

When Miss Marple joins a theatrical company after a blackmailer is murdered, several members of the troupe are also dispatched by this mysterious killer.

Director:

George Pollock

Writers:

David Pursall (screenplay), Jack Seddon (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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More Like This 

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Margaret Rutherford's true life story is in fact much more eccentric than the most famous fictional role she ever played: Miss Jane Marple - Agatha Christie's amateur sleuth. Rutherford's ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Margaret Rutherford ... Miss Jane Marple
Ron Moody ... H. Driffold Cosgood
Charles 'Bud' Tingwell ... Inspector Craddock (as Charles Tingwell)
Andrew Cruickshank Andrew Cruickshank ... Justice Crosby (as Andrew Cruikshank)
Megs Jenkins ... Mrs. Gladys Thomas
Ralph Michael Ralph Michael ... Ralph Summers
James Bolam ... Bill Hanson
Stringer Davis Stringer Davis ... Jim Stringer
Francesca Annis ... Sheila Upward
Pauline Jameson ... Maureen Summers
Annette Kerr Annette Kerr ... Dorothy
Alison Seebohm Alison Seebohm ... Eva McGonigall
Windsor Davies ... Sergeant Brick
Neil Stacy Neil Stacy ... Arthur (as Neil Stacey)
Maurice Good ... George Rowton
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Storyline

Although the evidence appears to be overwhelming in the strangulation murder of a blackmailer, Miss Marple's sole 'not guilty' vote hangs the jury 11-1. She becomes convinced that the real murderer is a member of a local theatrical troupe, so she joins them in order to gather information. The clues lead back many years to a single disastrously unsuccessful 1951 performance of a dreadful play written by the group's hammy director, H. Driffold Cosgood. Although at that time, several of the current cast members were only children, more murders follow before Miss Marple ultimately exposes the killer. Written by duke1029

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

miss marple | murder | jury | trial | woman | See All (82) »

Taglines:

New misdeeds are afoot afoot the footlights!


Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

March 1964 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Vier Frauen und ein Mord See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the penultimate production in the series of four films with Margaret Rutherford as Miss Jane Marple. The last is Murder Ahoy (1964) (made the same year as Murder Most Foul (1964)), in which Inspector Craddock has been promoted to the rank Chief Inspector. After the series concluded Rutherford and her husband Stringer Davis reprised their roles of Miss Marple and Mr Stringer only once more, for a brief cameo appearance in Hercule Poirot en het ABC mysterie (1965). See more »

Goofs

When the two cats exit Miss Marple's room, a bird-like toy on a string can be seen moving in the background and up to the ceiling, attracting the cats so they'll follow down the hall. See more »

Quotes

Miss Jane Marple: He isn't drunk. He's dead.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sliders: Murder Most Foul (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme From Dr. Kildare
(uncredited)
Music by Jerry Goldsmith
See more »

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User Reviews

 
George Pollock deserves kudos for mixing crime with comedy
26 January 2003 | by JuguAbrahamSee all my reviews

George Pollock's name never gets mentioned among major directors. Yet four of his Miss Marple films as best remembered for Ron Goodwin's music and the wonderful Dame Margaret Rutherford and real life husband Stringer Davis.

The four films of Pollock combined mystery with comedy in a way that it entertains even after 40 years after the films were made. The elements that hold up these four films were great casting, good screenplay, crisp editing, and charming music and sound effects. Pollock is not a David Lean or a philosopher-director. He is merely making cinema that is gripping and entertaining and how well he accomplishes this.

This film is the second only to "Murder Ahoy" among the four. And since "Murder Ahoy" followed "Murder Most Foul", it would be only too clear that Pollock was gaining in confidence and elegance with each film. In each of his "Murder" films Pollock cast a major British actor. In this one it is the talented Ron Moody (Fagin of "Oliver!"). In each of the four films the chosen British actor provides a counterpoint and balance to Dame Rutherford's major role. One tends to remember Miss Marple and not the other meaty roles (Lionel Jeffries, Robert Morley, James Robertson Justice)in each of the "Murder" films. All the four were memorable but Moody and Jeffries were truly remarkable. I found this a major work of Moody though not as memorable as his interpretation of Fagin and Uriah Heep in other films.

The juxtaposition of crime and comedy looks natural thanks to Pollock and imaginative casting. Pollock is probably a quiet achiever deserving more attention by critics and historians of British cinema.


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