Evil Under the Sun

 (2,031)7.11 h 56 min1982X-RayPG
Sir Peter Ustinov as the famous Belgian detective Hercule Poirot in this classic Agatha Christie mystery tale. At the attempt to find out how a millionaire wound up with a phony diamond, Poirot ends up on an exclusive island resort frequented by the rich and famous where a murder is committed, but everyone has an alibi.
Guy Hamilton
Peter UstinovJane BirkinColin Blakely
English [CC]
Audio languages
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John BrabourneRichard B. GoodwinMichael John Knatchbull
Agatha Christie
PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Content advisory
Drug usefoul languagesexual contentviolence
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Prime Video (streaming online video)
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4.7 out of 5 stars

2031 global ratings

  1. 78% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 13% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 6% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 2% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 1% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

Mike EmeryReviewed in the United States on March 11, 2020
5.0 out of 5 starsGreat comedy mystery, but consider reading the book first.
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EVIL UNDER THE SUN (1982, Universal Pictures in the US) Director: Guy Hamilton. Adapted script: Anthony Shaffer, based on the 1941 Agatha Christie novel. Adapted music: Cole Porter. Hat makers: Freddie Fox & Woody Shelp. This posh 1930s-set murder mystery has so much sun in it (as per the title), you may need suntan oil while watching it. This is the second film with Peter Ustinov as Hercule Poirot; most of his performance lies in his mustache and belly. It's a shame the film isn't English captioned, as his French accent (and the British accents) can be hard to penetrate. The film is a mannered cozy mystery set on an island off the coast of the mythical Adriatic nation of Tyrrania (actually Mallorca). You may want to read the book first because the film has a flood of characters who are hard to keep straight in the first half, before the murder occurs. Ultimately, only three emerge as fully drawn: those played by Maggie Smith, Diana Rigg, and Emily Hone (the youngster in the mix, and a terrific actress who sadly did little on the screen after this film). Smith and Rigg play old rivals always one-upping each other. (You have to hear Rigg say "hello" like "go to the devil.") The others are types, but they're fun types. The book is loosely adapted by Shaffer, but the plot and major characters persist (the book is set in Britain). As usual with Christie, the mystery is clever and challenging. The film adds comedy to the proceedings, especially in the first half. The Porter music is a stroke of genius, and if you wonder why I listed the hat makers in my opening credits, watch the film to find out. Highly recommended to fans of stylish whodunnits.
14 people found this helpful
Mr.and Mrs. H.Reviewed in the United States on October 18, 2018
5.0 out of 5 starsAlways been a favorite
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I have loved this movie since childhood. Peter Ustinov is my favorite Hercule Poirot, though my parents prefer David Suchet. Maggie Smith and Diana Rigg shine as rivals. My kids even enjoy the movie, guessing who was going die, and did it. Another wonderful thing is there is no gory murder scene, no tasteless sex scenes, so I can allow my kids to view it ( cursing is limited to a couple instances 1 or 2). My husband enjoyed trying to figure it out too. Agatha Christie was a master of the “who-done-it”.
Hopefully, Death on the Nile becomes available sometime soon.
14 people found this helpful
TafkaswfReviewed in the United States on November 1, 2020
4.0 out of 5 starsA Fun "Who Done It?" for any Peter Ustinov Fan
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Evil Under the Sun is a must for any Peter Ustinov fan. As usual, he chews up scenery and is a lot of fun to watch.

It certainly helps also, if you're an Agatha Christie mystery book fan, and it helps even more if you're a fan of her detective character, Hercule Poirot. Which Peter Ustinov plays. Throw in an elegant old hotel on a beautiful resort island location set in the pre-war 1920s or 1930s, interesting guests, and an easy to understand storyline, and you get a really fun, good movie.

The other thing I like about Evil Under the Sun is that there are a LOT of renowned, great actors in this movie. And they all get it- this is a fun, almost campy movie. And they act down accordingly. And in doing so, you like this movie even more.

The final reveal about who murdered the one guest is fun to watch too. It's thoroughly explained, to include flashbacks to earlier scenes in the movie, to further help you understand the clue that Hercule Poirot is talking about. And for the final time, Peter Ustinov captivates the entire room. And you, the viewer!

So if you want a fun, well-filmed, well-acted movie, or, if you're a fan of Agatha Christie, her character Hercule Poirot, or of Peter Ustinov, watch Evil Under the Sun. You'll be glad you did.
4 people found this helpful
D. J. HastingsReviewed in the United States on March 22, 2019
5.0 out of 5 starsMy favorite Agatha Christie movie -- Ingenious plot!
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This is probably my favorite Agatha Christie movie! Again we get Peter Ustinov as sleuth extraordinaire Hercule Poirot. Another all-star cast and great location shooting and historical details. For you Downton Abby fans, we also get to see Maggie Smith in her younger days (among many others) as the owner of a mediterranean resort property. A wonderful, entertaining ending, of course!
10 people found this helpful
BookmarkReviewed in the United States on August 28, 2016
5.0 out of 5 starsWhat more could one desire for a wonderful evening of entertainment
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This Agatha Christie Who-Done-It? is a delicious satirical romp through Hollywood decadence and competitiveness as played out on the gorgeous vacation island of Majorca (circa 1930's). Everything is over the top--the scenery, the costumes, the sets -- and fodder for extremely witty dialogue delivered by the likes of Peter Ustinov, Diana Rigg and Maggie Smith--all in their prime!! What more could one desire for a wonderful evening of entertainment? A delicious treat on SO MANY levels!!
26 people found this helpful
buzz berkeleyReviewed in the United States on July 1, 2019
1.0 out of 5 starsThe Agatha Christie cure for insomnia!
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After watching the 1974 all-star treatment of "Murder on the Orient Express" I rented "Evil Under the Sun" with hopes that it too would be a delight.

But it was a complete disappointment. Despite its stellar cast, "Evil Under the Sun" is almost completely lacking in energy and atmosphere. I fell asleep twice while watching it.

By the way, the 1974 "Murder on the Orient Express" is far better than the 2017 version.
7 people found this helpful
P2 Avid ReaderReviewed in the United States on March 14, 2020
5.0 out of 5 starsOUT STANDING -- all star cast - beautiful island retreat and fanciful period music
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I'd forgotten how good this film was!! Almost too fast on ending though -- I won't say WHO did it -- you will be surprised I hope!!

How fun -- and a totally different Hercule!! He did a great job of the character and I enjoyed the lead actors in this. Many big names in the supporting cast -- you won't be disappointed!!

Prime Streaming Video -- no problem with my high speed internet. I am connected using cable, not wireless to my LG television -- this shows well on a large 42 inch screen.
5 people found this helpful
Dr. Robert F. KnollReviewed in the United States on April 7, 2021
4.0 out of 5 starsSun, Sex and Sarcasm
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"Evil under the Sun" marks Peter Ustinov's second foray into the character of Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie's idiosyncratic and overwhelmingly self-assured Belgian detective with a gourmand's delight in fine food and wine and the tending of his distinctive moustache.
One of the more recent Poirot cycles began with "Murder on the Orient Express" (1974), starring the Oscar-nominated Albert Finney, which established the template for a complicated murder mystery set in an exotic location and featuring a cast of former stars, not quite stars , character actors and future television stars. The former star here is James Mason, most celebrated for his Oscar nominated performance in "A Star Is Born"(1954). The not quite stars include Roddy Mc Dowell. whose career goes back as far as "How Green Was My Valley"(1941), the character actor is the inimitable Sylvia Miles ("Midnight Cowboy" (1969), who is beyond bizarrely paired with Mason and the television stars are theatrical veterans and acting icons Diana Rigg ("The Avengers" (1960"s) and "Game of Thrones")and Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey"). In other words, with some time travel involved, Mrs. Peel versus the Dowager Countess of Grantham. Needless to say, Rigg and Smith exchange barbs and drop dead glances, to the music of Cole Porter no less.
The stand out elements of "Evil under the Sun", however, are the vibrantly photographed land and sea scapes of the island of Majorca, birthplace of Raphael Nadal, and the sexually magnetic character played by Nicholas Clay, fresh from his clothing deprived performances in "Lady Chatterley's Lover" and "Excalibur", both in the early 1980's. For those who are still sequestered by the pandemic, "Evil under the Sun" is a perfect example of what used to be called "an armchair adventure." Not to belittle the enormous death and suffering inflicted by the corona virus, this film serves a function: that of a good looking entertainment which is escapist while not being too mentally challenging.
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