Mystery’s Afoot in Star-Studded ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ Trailer
The game is afoot, chums. There’s been a murder most foul, and you are a suspect.
That is, in the event that you happen to be Willem Dafoe, Johnny Depp, Daisy Ridley, Judi Dench, Josh Gad, Tom Bateman, Lucy Boynton, or one of the other travelers aboard the Orient Express. As the grand locomotive makes its hazardous journey through a snow-tipped mountain range, one of the riders commits a heinous crime, and it falls to none other than the great investigator Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh, who also happens to be directing this hullabaloo) to sort out the facts in pursuit of the truth.
This star-studded whodunit has been a buzz magnet since the earliest phases of casting, and after whispers and murmurs and one hilarious Entertainment Weekly photo spread, a trailer has granted us a real taste of the upcoming chamber piece. The newly released clip is relatively simple, structured around a single shot through a train car that identifies the main players and the roles by which we can identify them: a Governess here, a Butler there, a Professor, a Missionary. But now I shall play Poirot myself and inspect this trailer a little closer, for there are some clues causing concern beyond the mere presence of Johnny Depp.
For one, could whoever edited this thing have found a more incongruous score? Whatever Muse and/or Imagine Dragons track growls in the background clashes harshly with the time period and subject matter. Moreover, the prevailing tone of stony-faced seriousness fights Christie’s original mood, which approached mystery as a sprightly game shot through with levity and amusement. Here’s hoping that the pep and wit of Chirstie’s prose shines through in the finished product, and that the trailer has assumed this pose in an effort to cater to tastes currently in vogue. Branagh showed his flair for the old-fashioned with the recent Cinderella remake; can he shift modes to something both grave and flighty?