DEATH ON THE NILE Review — A Lavish and Cunning Cruise

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Lisa Johnson Mandell’s Death on the Nile review raves about Kenneth Branagh’s latest writer/director outing, and encourages you to lose yourself in its splendor.

Death on the Nile reviewAgatha Christie’s Death on the Nile featuring Belgian Detective Hercule Poirot has been adapted many times before, for radio, stage, television and film—in 1978, with the unforgettable Peter Ustinov, Mia Farrow, Angeles Lansbury and Maggie Smith. It’s even been the subject of video games and a graphic novel.

But never has it been done so stylishly and lushly as it has now, with Kenneth Branagh producing, directing and starring as the legendary detective himself.

The production design, the cinematography, the music and the costumes are glories to behold. These in and of themselves make the film infinitely watchable.

But the plot and the performances are also intriguing. Even if you know the story well, this time around it’s still quite a treat to watch it being played out.

A quick summary — Poirot’s vacation in Egypt appears to become complicated when he runs into a pack of wealthy frenemies who convince him to join them on a luxurious Nile cruise. Murder ensues, naturally, and it’s up to Poirot to find out who done it, and perhaps find romance in the process?

In an eclectic cast packed with talent, the real stand out is  Sophie Okonedo who plays a sultry chanteuse. Gal Gadot as the obscenely wealthy heiress was also intriguing, as were Annette Bening, Leticia Wright and Emma Mackey, all who played suspects. Isn’t everyone a suspect in a Poirot story a suspect at one point or another? Of course they all had motives…

There are some viewers and media outlets who are allowing a handful of cast members’ off screen behavior overwhelm their on screen performances. Rather than spend time deciding whose actions are scorn worthy and whose are not, I’d suggest just going and getting lost in a highly entertaining well acted, well made, well told tale. Really, isn’t there enough negativity out there? Just sit back and enjoy.

Rated PG-13

2 Hours 7 Minutes

If this Death on the Nile review makes you want to cruise over to the nearest cineplex to see it, get times and tickets at

Lisa Johnson Mandell’s Death on the Nile review raves about Kenneth Branagh’s latest writer/director outing, and encourages you to lose yourself in its splendor.




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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and seen on Rotten Tomatoes. She is the author of three bestselling books, and spends as much of her free time as possible with her husband Jim and her jolly therapy Labradoodle Frankie Feldman.


  1. […] A Haunting in Venice is Branagh’s latest adaptation of the works of the iconic murder mystery author, following Murder on the Orient Express and Death on the Nile. […]

  2. […] Annette Bening gives a career defining performance as remarkable record setting distance swimmer Diana Nyad, who, in her 60’s, became the first person to complete the grueling four day, 110 mile swim from Cuba to Florida, without the aid of a shark cage. She is one of only a handful of humans who has completed the swim, period. […]

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