Murder on the Orient Express: Does the movie live up to the book?

BLOGWhenever I go see a movie based on a book, it is usually with a mix of excitement and apprehension, especially when I am a big fan of the book. I initially read Murder on the Orient Express many years ago as a kid when I was discovering my love of mystery novels, along with my love of all things Agatha Christie. This particular novel was one of my favourites (it is a classic for a reason), and one that was very memorable. The trailers for the movie were really well done, and I was more than happy to revisit and reread this classic Poirot mystery before seeing it come to life on the big screen. So, does it live up to the book?

Let’s start with the positives. The movie itself looks beautiful and is visually impressive. From the landscapes to the look of the characters, it is quite stunning and has a very grand feel to it. Kenneth Branagh is simply wonderful as the famous detective, Hercule Poirot and his performance is the absolute highlight of the movie. Simply wonderful. Continue reading “Murder on the Orient Express: Does the movie live up to the book?”

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J.K. Rowling (Screenplay/Movie)

img_3413“Jacob: Tell me — has anyone ever believed you when you told them not to worry?

Newt: My philosophy is that worrying means you suffer twice.

Admittedly I don’t fan over everything that is related to the world of Harry Potter (HP). I absolutely love the seven books in the series, which were a big part of my childhood, but never felt the need to explore anything outside of that. The Fantastic Beasts movie, however, sounded like a lot of fun, and I liked the fact that while it is related to the HP world, it stands apart from it.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is an original screenplay written by J.K. Rowling, which takes its title from a textbook used in the HP series. It tells the story of the author of the textbook, Magizoologist Newt Scamander and a time he visited New York for what was to be a brief errand. However, when three of his creatures escape from his magical case, it sets off a chain of events and a fantastical adventure.

I read the screenplay prior to watching the movie (a slight spoiler, I know) and found I really enjoyed the screenplay format and the story itself was fun with a cast of compelling and charismatic characters. Most interesting was seeing which parts of the movie matched my vision/interpretation, and which ones didn’t. There are characters and scenes that I visualized and imagined in a particular way, and it was fascinating to see the way the actors approached their character along with certain scenes. I liked having the unusual experience of reading a screenplay and then seeing it all brought to life, and of course it is always fun to spend some time in this magical world.