- Note: Blu-ray discs are in a high definition format and need to be played on a Blu-ray player.
And Then There Were None [Blu-ray]  [US Import]
Special offers and product promotions
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Customers who bought this item also bought
At first glance, René Clair might seem an odd match for Agatha Christie's mystery thriller And Then There Were None, but his buoyant touch is exactly what is missing from so many overly solemn remakes. Ten strangers gather for a mysterious gathering on a secluded island. It turns out to be a farewell party, for they have all been sentenced to die for crimes in their past by a self-appointed judge, jury and executioner who could be one of them. One by one, the guests are systematically dispatched as described in the lyrics of the children's rhyme "Ten Little Indians", while the survivors nervously eye one another, splintering into tenuous alliances until the next murder throws suspicion on someone new. A terrific cast of character actors have a ball with Dudley Nichols's witty script. The flamboyant sparring of Barry Fitzgerald (whose paternal Irish lilt takes a sinister dimension) and Walter Huston is almost upstaged by Roland Young's deadpan drollery. Romantic leads Louis Hayward and June Duprez come off as arch and stiff in a company that includes a sinisterly detached Judith Anderson, a dotty and distracted C Aubrey Smith, and a hilariously flippant Mischa Auer. The story has been remade numerous times under the title of Christie's novel, Ten Little Indians, but never as well as this 1945 version. Clair's effervescent, lively little gem is a fatal drawing-room comedy with a body count and a surreal mood of doom. --Sean Axmaker, Amazon.com --This text refers to the DVD edition.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Of all the versions this is obviously the best out there but I have given it 4 stars instead of 5 because having seen it once more after all these years it is a little too light compared to my memory of seeing it when I was younger.
Some comedy moments are justified and well placed,the sea sick Russian prince(By the way,why do they change character names and the guests crimes for no apparent reason???-this has always baffled me in film making),the deaf general etc.
But to fault it I would have to point out that the alleged guilt of Vera Claythorn is glossed over with a "If I told you I was innocent would you believe me?" Why? because she is the young,pretty woman? I suppose that was the way in the 1940's. But my main contention point is ex-detective William Blore,his cockney chappie is a bit grating and I found myself asking who he reminded me of...then I realised he reminded of the dimwitted Inspector Lastrade of the Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce Sherlock Holmes films.A case of over acting if ever there was as is the butler,Mr Rogers when he tells his wife to "Shut up!!" after the gramaphone record played their accusations... That particular scene reminded me of the old Todd Slaughter B movies about Sweeney Todd etc...pure ham!!!
But all in all,still a great,classic film but with the passage of time it seems to lacks real menace.
Best acting honours would have to go to IMO Walter Huston as Dr. Armstrong.
Having said all that I would take this film to a desert island any day of the week over all the blood & guts horror films churned out these days.
What did surprise me though when listening to the audio CD is that the original ending in the book is completely different to all 4 western film versions!!!!! Which made the CD all the more enjoyable as it was a geniune surprise.
The only film with the original ending is the Russian version.I haven't seen it but I wouldn't let the fact it was Russian put me off. I have seen the Russian versions of 6 or 7 Sherlock Holmes films and I have to say they all get 5 stars for acting,period detail and sticking to the original books!!!!!!!
Vasily Livanov who portrayed SH in the Russian films was given an honorary MBE in 2006 for his work.
The Queen told him he was the best Holmes she had seen.
There have been various film versions of the book, the first (and best) of which I am reviewing here. Most versions are called "Ten Little Indians", but this one retains the stage title, "And Then There Were None".
Although the film was made as long ago as 1945, it still makes entertaining viewing, notwithstanding the fact that it is in fairly grainy black and white and has sometimes rather cardboard-looking sets. That it is directed by the great René Clair helps, of course, as does the cracking script by Dudley Nichols and the choice cast of some of Hollywood's most memorable character actors.
Mischa Auer (who gets to sing the title song), Queenie Leonard, Judith Anderson (Mrs Danvers from "Rebecca"), Sir C. Aubrey Smith (wonderful!) and the splendidly adenoidal Richard Haydn all make the most of their moment in the spotlight and even the romantic leads, Louis Hayward and June Duprez, are fairly interesting. The stars of the film (not only in terms of billing) are, however, those three incorrigible scene-stealers, Barry Fitzgerald, Walter Huston and Roland Young; the former two make a great double act, while the latter gets to utter "I get it..." just once too often...
The film is reasonably faithful to the novel. There are a few changes which had been made to comply with the sensitivities of the day, but the most radical change concerns the ending; that of the original is pretty bleak, but the one here, while hardly a "happy ending", is broadly in line with the one Christie adopted for the stage version. Indeed, the ending here seems very satisfying; a satisfying ending, moreover, to a very satisfying film.
You should, moreover, be able to pick this up fairly cheaply.
Anyway, the film itself is very good with may well known character actors of the day (1945), an interesting story and atmospheric location of a lonely house on a deserted island. One by one the guests die in mysterious circumstances. The story is of course a well known one, so many will know 'who dun it' in advance, but nevertheless the film is worth watching as an interesting period piece. You may recognise Richard Haydn, who plays Rogers the butler, who later appeared as Max in The Sound of Music. And of course Irish Judge Francis Quincannon, played by well known character actor of the day, Barry Fitzgerald, has a central role (not to give too much away!)
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews