Hercule Poirot (Peter Ustinov) goes to an island hotel as part of an insurance scam investigation. He also reveals he gets sea-sick, but what about ‘Death on the Nile’? The hotel is full of tropes and an obvious victim in the form of stage star Arlena (Diana Rigg) who everyone loathes.
Arlena is rude and mean to everyone and ignores her chump husband to pal around with Patrick Redfern. Christine Redfern (Jane Birkin) sits around weepy and pathetic looking as her husband wears tiny swimshorts and chases after Arlena in blatant fashion.
Arlena wears OTT costumes and smart mouths everyone until someone finally gets around to strangling her. Arlena treated people like toys but never realised that someone has turned her into a toy.
Poirot sniffs out the killer and does a dramatic reveal. The killer when revealed doesn’t explain why Arlena was killed in such a complicated way. If the killer had gone for a simpler plan they’d have gotten away with it. For once the killer doesn’t fess up instantly but is still foiled. This was okay camp.
“A sudden attack of gold digging.”
“Go and play with jellyfish.”
“Even in those days she could always throw her legs up in the air higher than any of us. And wider.”
“He’s a nice fellow.”
“Yes I suppose he is. As gigolos go.”
“Scenes of jealously played close to open windows.”
The clean cut killers can't resist going on about murder being a privilege and dropping big unsubtle hints as to what they’ve done. They debate intellectual superiority with their former mentor Rupert (James Stewart) and are so unsubtle Rupert soon smells a rat. This was okay even with the gimmicky camerawork but the ending is an anti-climax.