Looking for a love potion to seduce Laurence, Marlène witnesses a psychic reader casting a spell to kill an enemy. Laurence, sceptic, does not believe in occult powers but when Alice's friend, a young heiress, suddenly dies, he needs to investigate the case with open mind.Written by
Love Agatha Christie, who has for a long time been one of my favourite authors. Love detective/mystery series/dramas, of which there are many classics, and every bit as intrigued by foreign language ones than those from the UK/US. Also love the French language, so lovely and poetic and singing in it is great fun and has always been a pleasure. So of course 'Les Petits Meurtres D'Agatha Christie' would have appealed to me.
As has been said more than once, 'Les Petits Meurtres D'Agatha Christie' is uneven and not ideal for fans wanting straight up adaptations of Christie's work, when they are loose adaptations and use the respective stories as a frame work. It is though to me very enjoyable and very intriguing, with a lot to like for those who love murder mysteries, foreign language and mystery mixed with comedy. "Le Cheval Pale" is very loosely based upon 'The Pale Horse', previously adapted for the ITV Marple series. While that adaptation, which wasn't faithful to the book either, was one of the high-ish middle adaptations of that series, did like this more. Also liked it far more than the 1997 version, which was confusing and dull despite good performances and production values.
Would have liked a tighter pace at times, but otherwise "Le Cheval Pale" is great fun and suitably suspenseful with a touch of weirdness.
The writing for Laurence and the chemistry between him and Alice improved enormously in the later Laurence/Avril episodes, and that can be seen with "Le Cheval Pale". Laurence is much more at ease and less obnoxious than seen before, the ill at ease obnoxiousness being a big problem with some of the previous Laurence/Avril episodes. Actually found him quite amusing, like in his chemistry with Marlene (who continues to be a great character with a wonderfully weird subplot and provides much welcome levity) and likeable. Do think actually that his chemistry with Marlene is a little more convincing here. The chemistry between Laurence and Alice still sparkles though and is actually harmonious with the two very different personalities gelling far more than they did previously, again something that was a problem before.
Elodie Frenck is a big standout here in "Le Cheval Pale" and even slightly outshines here the always spirited and charming Blandine Bellavoir. Valerie Dashwood has fun as the juicy character of Sybille.
Production values are typically handsome and so lovingly recreated, makes one nostalgic. The beautiful photography complements expertly. The music matches the light-hearted and at times very atmospheric tone very well. Much of the writing is fun and probes thought, with the light heart and intrigue nicely balanced. The story, taking on the darker and more suspenseful tone that the series was adopting at this point (while still allowing for some nice light-hearted moments that gel surprisingly well, like with Laurence and Marlene), compels with good twists and surprises, with nothing being too simple or too complicated. Despite how that all sounds, the suspense and light-heartedness never feels disjointed or become a tonal muddle.
Overall, fabulous. 9/10
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this