If you love a good murder mystery, look no further than Agatha Christie's Crooked House.
Based on the book of the same name, the film is absolutely packed with big Hollywood names. Starring Glenn Close, Christina Hendricks, Gillian Anderson, and Max Irons, the movie follows a familiar whodunnit path.
What Is Crooked House About?
The central mystery involves a British-Greek business tycoon, Aristide Leonides (Gino Picciano), who has died under suspicious circumstances in his mansion. However, his granddaughter believes that he was murdered.
She enlists the help of young private detective Charles Hayward, played by Max Irons, to solve the case before Scotland Yard exposes dark family secrets.
The list of suspects is seemingly endless as the entire family all live in one huge mansion.
On the sprawling estate, amidst an atmosphere of jealousy, bitterness and resentment, in a truly crooked house, Hayward encounters three generations of the wealthy family.
The potential suspects include the two Leonides sons and their respective wives. Plus, there is his new young American wife, played by Christina Hendricks (Good Girls), who is loathed by most of the family.
There is also his sister-in-law (from his first wife), family matriarch Lady Edith de Haviland (Glenn Close). Add in a couple of household staff and some disgruntled grandchildren, and Detective Hayward soon has his work cut out for him.
Each suspect has a valid reason for wanting to see Leonides dead. Characterised as a total control freak, he kept a tight grip on the family purse strings and refused to let any of them leave the family home.
But solving the murder is made rather difficult by the fact that nobody wants to talk to Hayward. Can he uncover the murderer?
Well, this is Agatha Christie (ABC Murders), so of course, he does. But with these types of movies, it's always the journey, not the destination, that matters the most.
Crooked House Official Trailer
Is Crooked House Worth Watching?
For decades film and tv makers have been churning out Agatha Christie adaptations. So how does Crooked House stack up against the rest?
Firstly, there are some excellent performances from the cast, and the story is good. Reminiscent of Knives Out, the central plot focuses on the murder of the family patriarch and the members of the large extended family, who all had motives to kill him.
However, as films go, Crooked House just seems to plod along. With no sub-plots or little red herrings to throw you off the scent, the ending is wrapped up very, very quickly.
So quickly, by the time you realise who did it, the film is over. No aftermath, no reaction from the other family members. The murderer is identified and it's the end.
So you are left sitting there thinking, ‘That's it?'. Overall, there are better examples of Agatha Christie's works, such as Murder on the Orient Express. However, Crooked House delivers as a filler if you've already watched it.
Crooked House Movie Cast
Directed and co-written by Gilles Paquet-Brenner with Julian Fellowes and Tim Rose Price, the Crooked House movie is based on Agatha Christie’s 1949 novel.
But to bring such an iconic and twisted tale to life, the creators needed a solid cast.
Glenn Close as Lady Edith de Haviland
Terence Stamp as Chief Inspector Taverner of Scotland Yard
Max Irons as Private Detective Charles Hayward, who exposes dark family secrets while trying to identify the killer
Stefanie Martini as Sophia Leonides, who is trying to find her grandfather's murderer and former lover of Charles Hayward
Julian Sands as Philip Leonides
Honor Kneafsey as Josephine Leonides
Christian McKay as Roger Leonides
Amanda Abbington as Clemency Leonides
Gillian Anderson as Magda West
Christina Hendricks as Brenda Leonides
Preston Nyman as Eustace Leonides
John Heffernan as Laurence Brown
Jenny Galloway as Nanny
Jacob Fortune-Lloyd as Brent
Gino Picciano as Aristide Leonides