Saturday, 28 September 2013

The Mysterious Affair at Styles - TV Review

Ok so having read the book again I just couldn't resist watching the TV version again too.

Do I need an excuse to watch David Suchet as Poirot?   No, No, NO!

So I get out my big box set of the dvds because I know that one is in it.

But then I think - I really should have these properly catalogued.

And a few hours later all my Poirot dvds are catalogued by set, date first aired on TV, length of time and year book was written.
I know, I know, I just get carried away but Imdb website and my lists of Agatha Christie's books (by Heron set, by year & alphabetically) are just so useful and interesting.
I will state clearly here that although I am now tempted to do my Miss Marple dvds in the same way I will not succumb to that temptation (well probably at least not until I read the next Miss Marple book anyway).

Ok I digress, but we all do that.

On to the TV adaptation......

It was filmed and broadcast in 1990, 23 years ago during the 3rd TV series starring David Suchet, and 70 years after the book had been published.

Did it stay true to the book?

Yes it did very much so and I was very pleased with that.  
It did however leave out a character which was a suspect within the book if only for a short time but in my eyes this actually helped the storyline for TV.
It also left out a few other little things that Poirot had to sift through in the book but again these in no way took away from the story.  Then it slightly changed one of the relationships of the story but again this helped not to sidetrack any of us as we would watch the 100 min episode. 

Were the characters well portrayed?

Yes I feel the casting was good for all the characters. 
I did feel like all of the family except one were just as I imagined when reading the book but then I have seen the TV adaptation so was I still subconsciously remembering the actual actors?  I did just think that Mary Cavendish would have been a taller, slimmer women but it made no difference to the story.

Was the filming good?

The outdoor scenes were better than the indoor scenes just simply because of the lighting, indoor tended to be darker than you would like when trying to watch for clues and see things clearly.  The backdrop of the beautiful building used as Styles was great as was the village. 
However because of the length of time which has passed since it was all shot it did seem a bit dated but then the story was set during the first world war so it may actually have helped to make us feel the older time set.

An added bonus for me was that they kept Hastings as much in the story as the book had and it was lovely to see the relationship between him and Poirot at that very early stage so gently portrayed.

I'm sure there are lots of other people who adore the books and TV shows which include Hastings too, aren't there?

Now this would go on my Shelfari Bookshelf of Dvds if there was such a thing.

If anyone is interested in other Christie TV Reviews see the links below

Elephants Can Remember TV Review

A Caribbean Mystery TV Review