Synopsis:A TV drama adaptation of Agatha Christie’s world famous mystery novel “Murder on the Orient Express”, filled with thrilling plot twists. The story setting has been changed to the early Showa era. “Murder on the Orient Express” is about a murder that occurred while on a luxury sleeper train called Orient Express. The first night of the drama will be faithful to the original. The second night will reconstruct the story based from the point of view of the criminal.
As stated, this is based on the famous novel of Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express. This story is quite famous, I think I have read the book a long time ago, but I couldn't quite remember. As you can expect, this is a mystery drama. Of course I had to watch it! It is divided in 2 episodes.The first episode is very faithful to the original story changing only the characters and the setting in Japan. The second episode is a retelling with a different point of view. Each episode is about a movie's length, it is long.
The story takes place around the beginning of the showa era, in the 1920's or 1930's. It starts as a famous detective boards a train and find himself in a tricky situation... For the first episode, you follow the train of thoughts and point of view of the detective, trying to make sense of the situation.
This can be really exiting to you, or on the contrary quite boring. Most of the story takes place in the same area and pretty much the only action is the detective questioning people. The fun part takes place in your head, putting the pieces of the mystery together. Myself, I was intrigued by the story, however the person watching it with me fell asleep in the middle. If you are not immersed in the mystery, it will be boring.
The story is good, of course, it is based on a very famous novel. The thing is more like, is that kind of mystery the kind of thing you will enjoy. If you are a mystery fan I am sure you will love it.
The second episode was for me more like a bonus. Since I enjoyed the first episode, I loved the second one as well. There is no surprise in that episode (it's about past actions and different point of view you already learned in first episode) and wasn't really needed, but I am glad they made it. At the end, I felt like I had a great experience and wanted more of it.
This certainly contains a ton of actors! Also, most of them are known and are pretty good actors too.
The main character is played by Nomura Mansai. He hasn't played many dramas or film before and it was my first time seeing. I have been told that he was actually a famous Nou actor from a Nou acting family. Since he is a Nou actor , I had high hopes from him ( I have been reading a bit about Nou recently and I formed a profound respect for that art). His acting is definitely very.. unique. As expected, his body language and facial expression are amazing, but I had a bit of trouble with his voice tone. I am guessing it is a trait from the detective in the book. It sounds pretty funny (borderline annoying) and it added a comedic effect. Other than that, it was pretty fun following him in the first episode.
The rest of the cast was also amazing. I think that they were all chosen well and played their roles well. Since there are so many in a short time, I thought I might get confused but they were all unique. I am sure they had great fun filming this. At the end, I had this feeling that the cast had great chemistry and I just wanted to see them more. I felt very exited and the music greatly helped with this too.
MusicWhile I didn't really pay attention to the music score in the first episode, I really noticed it more in the second. (I was wearing headphone for the second episode). The music was really good! It has a classical beat which is beautiful in the 1920's scenery. It had some quick exiting music melody too, enhancing the excitement to unravel the mystery. I am very pleased with the music here ^^
RecommendationJapanese drama are the best for mysteries in my opinion. Or maybe, they do a lot of them and I watch a lot of them too! If you liked this special, I really recommend to check out the Higashino Keigo mystery series , I have watched this one here. I believe there is a few seasons of them. Each episode is based on a story of Higashino Keigo and the mysteries are usually very good, kind of like the Agatha Cristie of Japan!