6.2/10
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The Mirror Crack'd (1980)

Miss Jane Marple (Dame Angela Lansbury) comes to solve the mystery when a local woman is poisoned and a visiting movie star seems to have been the intended victim.

Director:

Guy Hamilton

Writers:

Jonathan Hales (screenplay), Barry Sandler (screenplay)
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Angela Lansbury ... Miss Marple
Geraldine Chaplin ... Ella Zielinsky
Tony Curtis ... Martin N. Fenn
Edward Fox ... Inspector Craddock
Rock Hudson ... Jason Rudd
Kim Novak ... Lola Brewster
Elizabeth Taylor ... Marina Rudd
Wendy Morgan ... Cherry
Margaret Courtenay ... Mrs. Bantry
Charles Gray ... Bates, The Butler
Maureen Bennett Maureen Bennett ... Heather Babcock
Carolyn Pickles ... Miss Giles
Eric Dodson ... The Major
Charles Lloyd Pack Charles Lloyd Pack ... Vicar (as Charles Lloyd-Pack)
Richard Pearson ... Doctor Haydock
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Storyline

The year is 1953. The small English village of St. Mary Mead, home to Miss Jane Marple (Dame Angela Lansbury), is delighted when a big American movie company arrives to make a movie telling of the relationship between Jane Grey and Elisabeth I, starring the famous actresses Marina Rudd (Dame Elizabeth Taylor) and Lola Brewster (Kim Novak). Marina arrives with her husband, Jason (Rock Hudson), and when she discovers that Lola is going to be in the movie with her, she hits the roof as Lola and Marina loathe each other on sight. Marina has been getting death threats, and at a party at the manor house, Heather Babcock (Maureen Bennett), after boring Marina with a long story, drinks a cocktail made for Marina, and dies from poisoning. Everybody believes that Marina is the target, but the Police Officer investigating the case, Chief Inspector Dermot Craddock (Edward Fox) isn't sure, so he asks Miss Jane Marple, his aunt, to investigate. Written by Lee Horton <Leeh@tcp.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Even if you didn't love her last movie, that's no reason to try and kill her... But somebody sure is! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 December 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Agatha Christie's The Mirror Crack'd See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$11,000,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$11,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

G.W. Films, EMI Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Black and White (opening sequence)| Color | Color (colour) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Miss Jane Marple is seen smoking a cigarette. See more »

Goofs

When Liz Taylor breaks the oval mirror in her bedroom, she then lies on the bed with Rock Hudson and when she gets up, the mirror is unbroken for her to sit down and look into. See more »

Quotes

Marina Rudd: [to Lola Brewster] What are you supposed to be, a birthday cake? Too bad everybody's HAD a piece.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: 1953 See more »

Connections

Featured in Agatha Christie: A Woman of Mystery (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

There's No Business Like Show Business
(uncredited)
Composed by Irving Berlin
See more »

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User Reviews

At least it has an Agatha Christie plot
20 November 2001 | by SpleenSee all my reviews

This is the film that launched Angela Lansbury's career as a television sleuth. The character she began playing four years later was much the same as the one she plays here - and it's not Miss Marple. Not that purists have any right to complain. Agatha Christie's Miss Marple isn't really Miss Marple, either. Miss Marple first appeared in "Murder at the Vicarage" (published 1930), and I can't help thinking of the character in that book as the REAL Miss Marple: a transparent, almost pathologically nosy woman who thoroughly enjoyed prying for its own sake, who as capable of solving mysteries because she was unable to rest so long as there was potential gossip she didn't know about. She wasn't a saint, she wasn't an inspired guesser, and she wasn't wise.

Almost immediately, though (in "The Tuesday Club Mysteries", published 1932), Miss Marple transformed into someone who WAS saintly, inspired and, worst of all, wise, and it's this latter, less agreeable Miss Marple that dominates the subsequent novels. What obligation does anyone else have to be authentic, if Agatha Christie herself wasn't? So far as I'm concerned the character is now fair game for any revisionist interpretation whatever; and if so, give me Angela Lansbury's energy over Joan Hickson's "authenticity" any day. ...Strange, then, that the film doesn't really work. The puzzle itself is a real humdinger - one of Christie's very best, in my opinion - and the denouement is handled very well. But there's something bookish and stifled about everything leading up to it. Most Christie adaptations have a similar plodding quality (notable exceptions: Billy Wilder's "Witness for the Prosecution", Sidney Gilliat's "Endless Night", and people who have seen René Clair's "And Then There Were None" think highly of that, too) - there's an AIR of excessive fidelity to the book, even when quite a few details have been changed.

One problem unique to this one is the set of laboured jokes at the expense of 1950s Hollywood - at least, the jokes WANT to be at the expense of 1950s Hollywood, but I think they come from "My Big Book of 1000 One-Liners", or some such.


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