Truly Miss Marple

 

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Last night I was switching between Amazon Prime and Netflix trying to decide what to watch when I came across a documentary entitled Truly Miss Marple: The Curious Case of Margaret Rutherford.

As I’ve said before, though I love the Marple books, there’s not been a film version that I’ve liked.  However, I’ve never seen Margaret Rutherford portray the character. I don’t know that I’d ever heard of her before last night.

The documentary was interesting for many reasons. It made me feel as if a member of a family just started interviewing people and recording it. At one point a person being interviewed stops to take a telephone call and the cameras keep rolling. If you have Amazon Prime and any interest in Miss Marple, this show is definitely worth your time.

Margaret Rutherford was a fascinating character. Her  young life was full of scandal and tragedy. Agatha Christie could have written it! When Margaret was very young her father suffered a breakdown. After being released from the hospital, he went and murdered his own father who was a clergyman. Not long after, while living in India, her mother committed suicide. Margaret was sent back to England to live with her aunt.

In 1961 Margaret starred in Murder She Said, her debut as Miss Marple. It was rumored that Agatha Christie had chosen her for the role, but that was untrue. Christie was not very pleased with the way MGM handled the adaptations of her books. She held no ill-will against Margaret, though, and dedicated The Mirror Crack’d Side to Side to the actress.

The next two films were based on Poirot novels, but the studio rewrote them to suit the Marple character.Murder at the Gallop was released in 1963 followed a year later by Murder Most Foul. The last film, Murder Ahoy was not taken from a Christie novel, but instead written by two screenwriters.

I’m now anxious to see these films. I understand in them Miss Marple receives not just one, but two marriage proposals and she can be seen doing the twist. I think to watch them, though, I’ll need to pretend she’s not the actual Miss Marple.

This week I’m still reading A Caribbean Mystery and enjoying it a great deal. What are you reading? I’m always looking for more good books to read!

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