The Mirror Cracked 1980 (1980) Other movies recommended for you
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Plot: Miss Marple comes to solve the mystery when a local woman is poisoned and a visiting movie star seems to have been the intended victim. Runtime: 105 mins Release Date: 19 Dec 1980
The Mirror Cracked 1980 Elizabeth Taylor's last good movie to date. Though the production values are more in line with a well done "made-for-TV" production, I enjoyed this film a lot. Co-starring with a couple of by-gone Hollywood legends, Rock Hudson and Kim Novak and an uncredited cameo by a young Pearce Brosnan , The Mirror Cracked tells the tale of a famous actress temporarily residing in the English countryside while on location for a film she's starring in.Early on in the film, a welcome to the countryside party is thrown by the local townsfolk and at the party, one <more>
of the guests drops dead. Soon we learn she was poisoned. Then we learn the poison was intended for Miss Taylor. The rest is all suspicion and old rivalries with Taylor at the center of every drama.Two scenes stand out : one comedic, one dramatic. A bit of fun occurs when Taylor, observing the ravaging of time on her face in a mirror, utters, "Wrinkles, wrinkles, go away, come back on Doris Day!" Too funny.The other moment comes when audience's focus in on Taylor's great eyes for probably the last time in cinematic history. It happens at a pivotal moment early on in the plot, just before the first victim drops dead of poisoning, and Taylor, at the top of a stairway, dressed in purple to match her eyes, appears startled. She freezes, the guests stop what they're doing and wonder what's happening. Then the director pulls in tight on Miss Taylor's famous eyes and for one short moment in time, we experience once again, all the magnetism and power of that wonderful actress that has captivated viewers for oh these many years.
I have only bought 3 movies in my life, and this is one of them the other two were: "Victor/Victoria" and "The Emerald Forest".In another very memorable movie, "Misery", the Kathy Bates character goes into a tirade about how some of the Saturday serials she saw as a kid "didn't play fair with the audience". In contrast, "The Mirror Crack'd" respects the audience's intelligence. When you find out the reason for the murder in this movie, and who did it, the explanation makes perfect sense. Too many other mystery movies seem to revel <more>
in keeping the audience in the dark the whole time, and then "pull a fast one" when it comes time to reveal who did the murder and why. "The Mirror Crack'd" is far too cleverly written to ever be guilty of this.Elizabeth Taylor plays an American actress desperately attempting a comeback after a personal tragedy not only devastated her career but her life as well. Rock Hudson plays her husband, who will be directing her big comeback movie.Kim Novak is her bitter arch rival. Among other great lines of dialogue, one jab at Taylor is particularly scathing. In a rivalry reminiscent of Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, Kim Novak tries to publicly humiliate Taylor's character by saying, "Darling, not only have you kept your beautiful figure, but you've added so much to it" I hope I'm remembering that line correctly Ms. Taylor gives a remarkable performance here. Her character is emotionally brittle, and just like watercolor paints blend together in odd and interesting combinations when mixed with water, her emotions seamlessly and fluidly change from one second to the next. Taylor's performance is perfectly in synch with the tone of this movie.Chicago Tribune movie critic, Roger Ebert, once began a movie review by saying, "I hated this movie. I hated everything about this movie". I would like to end my movie review by saying, "I loved this movie. I loved everything about this movie".Addendum, February 11, 2007 I am staying at the beautiful Hotel Marrols in Bratislava Slovakia , and can you believe that The Mirror Crack'd is one of the 61 movies they offer? What am amazing coincidence!
Kim Novak,Elizabeth Taylor : Super Stars in a Fun Film Mystery (by AndersonWhitbeck)
Before the terms were invented, Kim Novak, Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor and Tony Curtis were movie superstars. In the late 1950's and 1960's few could rival these stars in box office pull. Guy Hamilton assembled this group of once great stars in a great film "The Mirror Crack's" based on the Agatha Christie novel. Starring as detective Miss Marple is a fine actress Angela Lansbury. Lansbury is supported by a cast of wonderful British actors such as Geraldine Chaplin and Pierce Brosnan in a cameo, and other well known character actors, this film is fun to watch <more>
especially seeing Kim Novak and Elizabeth Taylor in a funny cat-fight with inside Hollywood humor.Beautifully photographed in the English Countryside by Chris Challis follows the assembling of a movie company of high strung Hollywood stars making a movie, thus a movie within a movie. There is a twinge of sadness that a real life tragedy affecting the late and much admired film star Gene Tierney is the basis of this mystery. Not going to tell much more of the plot here it is well worth seeing to discover for oneself.Elizabeth Taylor much the Queen of Hollywood is very fine here and indeed very Queenly, the surprise is a very animated and fun Kim Novak holding her own and much more in her spirited scenes with Elizabeth Taylor and their closeups prove that both Kim Novak and Elizabeth Taylor great cinema beauties and true Movie Queens.
This is almost a 10. Highly underrated. Good plot, great atmosphere, wonderful star performances and a mystery that's hard to solve. What's not to like? No, it's not academy award material, and wasn't meant to be. MIRROR CRACK'D rates up there with EVIL UNDER THE SUN. Wish more films of this ilk were made today. Pure escapist entertainment with no special effects or gory scenes. Fine for the whole family. TAYLOR, LANSBURY, CURTIS and especially NOVAK are top notch. An actress named Maureen Bennett is also very good in her small role. Also note a young Pierce Brosnan in a <more>
bit role. This is really a well done who and why done it. Try seeing it a second time to spot some of the clues you've obviously missed the first time.
The Mirror Crack'd is a great, fast-paced book by famed writer Agatha Christie. This movie, although quite amusing and fun to watch, did not cover anywhere NEAR the entire amount of plot details...fun to watch Taylor and Novak together and hear their catty remarks. If you don't like this movie, don't let it give you a bad impression of the book or author.
Kim Novak and Elizabeth Taylor as Movie Queens (by drednm)
Agatha Christie's plot and Angela Lansbury's casting as Miss Marple take a back seat to the Hollywood movie crew that invades the little village of St. Mary's Mead in this film adaptation of Christie's 1962 novel "The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side."A movie about Mary, Queen of Scots is being filmed and two rival movie queens, played by Elizabeth Taylor and Kim Novak in their only film together are playing Mary and Elizabeth I. Catty and campy to the max, they snipe at each other as they jockey for power in making the film. Taylor is married to Rock Hudson <more>
the director and Novak is married to Tony Curtis the producer . There's also an assistant Geraldine Chaplin who is having an affair with Hudson.The locals are a pale lot compared to this Hollywood flash. But when a local woman Maureen Bennett is poisoned at a reception for the Hollywood crew, Miss Marple jumps into the fray with the help of her nephew from Scotland Yard Edward Fox .The murder mystery unveils amid the flying insults between Novak and Taylor as well as between Hudson and Curtis. But things turn very serious when another murder occurs.This might be minor Christie and Lansbury strikes me as badly cast as Marple but the film is lively and fun. Others in the cast include Wendy Morgan as Cherry, Richard Pearson as the doctor, Charles Lloyd-Pack as a vicar, Carolyn Pickles as Miss Giles, Margaret Courtenay as Mrs. Bantry, and look for Pierce Brosnan as a movie extra.There's also a film Marple goes to see called "Murder at Midnight" which features Dinah Sheridan, Nigel Stock, Ian Cuthbertson, and Anthony Steel, and which seems to serve no purpose other than to display Marple's powers of deductive reasoning.Worth watching for Kim Novak and Elizabeth Taylor.
The Mirror Crack'd is one of the many Agatha Christie stories made into an all-star film. This one is more campy and less opulent than "Murder on the Orient Express," for instance, but for what it is, it's pretty good. Set in the '50s in Miss Marple's village of St. Mary Mead, the film stars lots of big names from that era: Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, Tony Curtis, Kim Novak - a veritable who's who of '50s megastars. Angela Lansbury plays Miss Marple, and she's perfect in the role. The film also has an appearance by Pierce Brosnan in a small, uncredited <more>
part.The script has the Taylor and Novak characters camping it up with bitchy insults which I don't quite remember from the book. The story concerns a movie star, her husband, her co-star nemesis, etc., coming to St. Mary Mead to make a movie. During a party, a local resident is murdered, but the intended victim is assumed to be Taylor. It's up to Miss Marple to unravel the mystery as more murders occur.The scene between Taylor and Edward Fox is especially good, and I've never been sure if Taylor falling on top of Hudson on the bed was supposed to be funny or not - in the movie theater, it got a laugh.It's great to see all these old stars in the same film. By the way, perhaps this was mentioned by one of the posters - this story is based on a real-life incident that happened to Gene Tierney.
Highly underrated, this low-key little whodunit manages to bring together two unlikely genres, the English village murder mystery and the catty Hollywood self-satire. While who did do it is not that surprising, the reason why is clever and touching. Interestingly, the central plot is loosely based on the real-life tragedy that befell Gene Tierney, star of the legendary film noir "Laura." The cast of 50's Hollywood icons give very good performances, though, sadly, for most it represents the last really good parts they have had. Hudson is especially good in a bittersweet role. <more>
Lansbury is crisp and efficient as Miss Marple and could have made a series of these films had she not found meatier material as another mistress of murder on "Murder, She Wrote." Indeed, though I adore Margaret Rutherford, I think Lansbury does better by the role of Miss Marple. This is not a great mystery movie, but works very well as light entertainment and as a last hurrah for several fine actors.
'Out flew the web and floated wide; The mirror crack'd from side to side: "The curse is come upon me," cried The Lady of Shallot.'If you are a fan of Christie's detective novels, this is a definite "must see." Lansbury is the personification of Christie's character, Miss Jane Marple. Her portrayals as Miss Marple are dead on Christie's wonderful character development, and in this critic's opinion, there is no other Marple.Lansbury takes a back seat this time as Miss Marple lets her favorite nephew Scotland Yard Inspector Delbert Craddock played <more>
very competently by Edward Fox , conduct his official investigation into an accidental murder which takes place in a rather posh English home, peopled by American movie stars.Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor, Tony Curtis, Kim Novac, Pierce Brosnan as an uncredited 'Jamie' , and of course Angela Lansbury star in this wonderful who-dunnit, which was originally written by the notable Agatha Christie.While this production is not of the epic quality of her two best-known book-to-film adaptations, "Death on the Nile" and "Murder on the Orient Express," this is a quality production which was great fun to watch.The barbs exchanged by Taylor and Novac were darkly wonderful, and the relationship between Taylor and Hudson was beautifully represented with Taylor's lines..."Bags, bags, go away! Come again on Doris Day!" Hudson's facial expression is absolutely priceless! I found all aspects of this production to be well done and professionally delivered fun.While this was far from Taylor's best performance, she is believable and genuine as a washed-up one-time starlet desperate to make her come-back.It rates an 8.1/10 from...the Fiend :.