Agatha Christie is one of the greatest crime novelists of all time. Her stories are celebrated all across the world and have remained popular even in the decades following her death. Considered a master of crime and mystery, Christie is best-known for her Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple detective fiction, and Christie has been named as the best-selling author of all-time in the Guinness Book of World Records.
As you might imagine from someone so successful, much of Christie’s work has been adapted into other mediums, such as radio, TV, and film. There have been some excellent Agatha Christie adaptations over the years, and several incarnations of Hercule Poirot. We are going to take a look at what we feel are some of the very best movies based on Agatha Christie novels.
Murder on the Orient Express (1974)
One of the best-known of Christie’s adaptations, this movie has had a remake which is currently in theaters, and we are yet to see. But, this one, the original, is one of her best adaptations. An iconic, tense, and very clever murder mystery, with Albert Finney, as Hercule Poirot, on fine form. With an all-star cast and even a seal of approval from Christie herself, Murder on the Orient Express is a classic and remains one of her best adaptations. Try to check it out before you go see the new one, then you can compare the two.
Death on the Nile (1978)
We love Death on the Nile; in fact, it might just be our favorite Agatha Christie adaptation. Peter Ustinov takes on the role of Hercule Poirot (he’s not as good as David Suchet, but he’s still great), a role he would go on to play a further five times. This story sees Poirot trying to get to the bottom of the murder of a wealthy heiress during a Nile cruise. The movie is packed full of red herrings, and more than a few twists and turns, and it has a star-studded cast once again.
And Then There Were None (1945)
Considered to be Christie’s masterpiece, this novel has gone through several name changes and permutation over the years, for obvious reasons. The story has been adapted several times, including a recent BBC adaptation a couple years back. But, we feel like this tale of 10 strangers lured to a remote island and murdered by one of their own is a stunning adaptation. This was a groundbreaking movie when it came out, despite the ending being altered drastically from the book.
There have been so many wonderful Agatha Christie adaptations over the years, and these are just a few of the best ones. If you get the chance to check out any of her work, make sure you do. The novels are a total treat and really set the scene for the future direction of detective fiction. And, these adaptations make for some of the smartest and most memorable movies ever made. There are plenty more we could have added, with Witness for the Prosecution being a major favorite, but we think these three best encapsulate her work.