Murder She Said (1961) Movie Script

Station annouuncer: The train standing
at Platform 2 is the 4:50
for Ealing Broadway. Hanwell.
Hayes. West Drayton.
Langley. Taplow. Milchester
and Brackhampton.
- Tickets, please.
- A woman has been strangled.
- Pardon?
- A man strangled a woman in a train.
- I saw it out there!
- Strangled?
Yes, strangled.
You must do something.
Me? Well...
Madam, don't you think you had a nap
and maybe had a bad dream?
Young man, I was not dreaming.
What are you going to do about it?
Well... we'll be in Brackhampton
in about five minutes.
- I'll report it then.
- Thank you.
- Can I have your details?
- Of course.
Miss Jane Marple.
- Marple?
- Marple.
Old Pasture Lane.
- Milchester.
- Milchester. I see.
I'll report it
to the stationmaster...
- Yes, please do.
- Thank you.
A bad dream indeed.
All right, Lucy, I'll answer that.
- Good morning...
- Not today.
Inspector Craddock, County CID.
Oh, I am so sorry.
Do come in, Inspector.
I've been going through
all the papers for the last two days
and not a word about the murder.
I suppose the police asked the press
to say nothing for now.
Do sit down.
Lull the murderer into a false sense
of security, then pounce!
What's that?
Oh, how stupid of me. I am so sorry.
You will have some tea, won't you?
- Oh...
- Tea for the Inspector, please.
Yes, ma'am.
Well now, have you got him?
Well, I... that is...
...we've come to the conclusion that
what you saw on the train was...
...a man and a woman...
Yes, as I said.
I mean...
perhaps they were honeymooners?
Inspector, I may be
what is termed a spinster,
but I do know the difference
between horseplay and murder.
Yes, Miss Marple, but there's been
a full search of every train
and no hospital has treated
any such woman.
She was blonde,
with a fur collar coat.
No such woman was seen getting on or
off a train alone or accompanied.
Of course not, she was dead!
The tracks were searched for the
whole length of the line - negative.
Oh, so you don't believe me?
I didn't mean to imply that.
- You did.
- Not at all.
What then?
A woman cannot be murdered
on a busy train
without our finding out about it.
I'm sure you mean well, Inspector,
but if you imagine
that I am going to sit back
and let everybody regard me
as a dotty old maid,
you are very much mistaken.
Good day!
I'm sorry, The Hatrack Hanging,
Falcon Smith's latest,
we haven't received our copy yet.
Plain inefficiency.
- Let me know the moment it comes in.
- Of course, Mrs Stainton.
- Good morning, Miss Marple.
- Good morning, Mr Stringer.
Good morning, Hilda.
One moment...
...The Hatrack Hanging,
I've been keeping it for you.
- Would you say I am unstable?
- Certainly not.
- In full possession of my faculties?
- Absolutely...
- Not given to hallucinations?
- No.
Thank you, Mr Stringer.
- The police think I'm dotty.
- What?
I saw a young man and woman
in the throes of connubial bliss.
If I were you, Miss Marple,
I would write to the Chief Constable.
Mr Stringer, how many detective
novels have we read over the years?
Lmpossible to say.
Certainly hundreds.
Yes, which gives us a certain
knowledge of the criminal mind?
Most assuredly.
Well, this is where we put
that knowledge to the test.
- We?
- Yes, we!
So it has come in!
Oh, has it?
Well, I think I have first call.
You won't like it. Too obvious.
The mother did it, of course.
How do you know? It's just come in.
It always is with Falcon Smith.
A deprived child, you know.
Crumpets for tea,
Mr Stringer, if you care to join me.
Indeed I would, Miss Marple.
Ah, yes, here we are.
I calculate the five o'clock express
to Brackhampton overtook my train
somewhere about there.
How can you be sure?
The ticket collector said
five minutes to Brackhampton.
He came in more than a minute
after the murder.
So that makes it six minutes before
Brackhampton at, say, 30 mph.
So... about there!
The body, Miss Marple?
That was thrown from the train
between here and Brackhampton.
- The police found nothing.
- Of course not.
The murderer returned before the
search and disposed of the body.
By Jove, the police will want
to investigate now.
They say there is no investigation.
- Surely, a fresh search...
- Yes, but we will conduct our own.
- Eh?
- Yes, Mr Stringer.
I recommend
a hearty breakfast tomorrow.
You and I are going to take
an early morning walk!
There must be something somewhere.
A body can't be thrown out of a
fast-moving train without some trace.
If we linger here much longer,
we shall certainly be apprehended.
Nonsense! No one will give two
tracklayers a second glance.
I'm not convinced
our disguises are adequate.
A shoe, a bit of cloth... something.
Our timetable
may have been out of date,
but I'm sure
the 7:15 is still running.
- Very possibly.
- It could be most dangerous up here.
Miss Marple!
- Miss Marple!
- Yes?
There you are!
I think I heard something.
I think I've found something.
Consistent with something
having been dumped from a train.
If it was the body,
it would roll down and finish up
against this wall.
Then where is it?
That, Mr Stringer, is the question.
It could be buried.
You'd need a pick or a shovel.
No, this is hardly an ideal spot
for disposing of a body.
From her fur collar, I think.
Mr Stringer,
will you give me a leg up?
- Really, Miss Marple, I...
- Please, Mr Stringer.
No, no!
Make a stirrup.
That's it. Come on now.
CarefuI! Are you ready?
- Interlock your fingers!
- They are interlocked!
- Well, are you ready?
- Yes... up!
- What a frightfuI man.
- What a frightfuI dog!
Miss Marple,
prudence demands a retreat.
I am convinced the body
is on the other side of this wall.
That's the Ackenthorpe Hall Estate?
I know. Perfect.
Easy enough for someone
from the house to get the body
and dispose of it in the grounds.
Do you mean one of the family?
Yes, or one of the servants -
if they have any.
Servants... I wonder...
Miss Marple, whatever it is,
no, no, no!
Mr Stringer,
we will withdraw temporarily.
- Good morning.
- Good morning.
There's nothing on my books.
Not so much as a mother's help.
I'm seeking a post, not offering one.
Pray be seated, my good woman.
Seek no more.
You've come to the right place.
How good to see the spirit
of unselfish service is still here.
Let me see now.
Yes! Here's a perfect plum.
"CheerfuI home for cheerfuI lady.
Own suite, TV, radio
and a use of car.
Tea in bed on Sundays.
Pension scheme."
Heaven forbid!
Oh, all right.
"Mrs Forbes Alexbridge.
Setting up house near Monte Carlo."
They won't have foreigners.
"Own gaming allowance."
I don't like gambling.
"Mrs Hamilton Potts."
The Dingley Stud Farm, you know.
"Seven children - eldest seven."
Oh, no, thank you.
May I have a quiet word
with Mrs Binster?
I am Mrs Binster.
Oh, I see.
Well, I wondered if there was
a position at Ackenthorpe Hall?
- Ackenthorpe Hall?
- Yes, Ackenthorpe Hall.
Oh, yes,
I think I can accommodate you.
Yes, there's always a vacancy there.
Thank you.
I'm Jane, from Mrs Binster's
Employment Agency, the new maid.
Well, you look old enough
to know better. Come in.
- I am to see Miss Ackenthorpe.
- You're expected. In there.
- Miss Ackenthorpe?
- Yes.
I'm Jane.
- The new maid?
- Yes, Jane Marple.
If you'll kindly show me
where to put my things...
Oh, yes. Yes, of course.
Is this post
really what you are looking for?
Well naturally,
otherwise I wouldn't be here.
I don't want a housekeeper.
I want someone to... to do the work.
Yes. You want cooking, washing up,
beds made, floors scrubbed,
fires lit, ashes taken away...
I understand.
- I hope you'll find us suitable.
- Oh, I'm sure I shall.
I hope the work's not too exacting.
There are three of us,
myself, my nephew -
down for the school holidays -
and Father.
- May I show you to your room?
- Yes.
I'll take that, my dear.
Perhaps the clubs, if you don't mind.
- I must keep fit, you know.
- Yes, of course.
Our staff consists of Hillman,
the gardener,
and Mrs Kidder, she let you in.
She comes in three afternoons a week
to do the rough work.
My grandfather. He founded
the family fortune - tea biscuits.
Oh yes and very excellent biscuits
they were too.
A severe man, I'm afraid.
Miss Marple, I think it only fair
to explain that my father is...
...quite frankly, difficult at times.
He's an invalid.
He's very keen on economy
and sometimes says things
that upset people.
- I wouldn't want you to...
- I'm used to caring for the elderly.
We'll manage.
Emma! I hear you!
- Yes, Father. Excuse me.
- Don't try to sneak off.
- Is the new girl with you?
- Well... yes, Father.
I hope she's got more meat on her
than the last one. I hate 'em skinny!
Don't just stand there boggling,
bring her in.
Yes... er...
will you come in please?
this is Miss Marple, er... Jane.
A plain Jane if I ever saw one.
We can't all be young and handsome
can we, Mr Ackenthorpe?
I cannot tolerate impertinence.
Then we should get on admirably -
neither can I.
If you're staying and I suppose
you've got to, understand this:
Because I live in a big house
doesn't mean I'm a rich man.
So don't come here
with big ideas.
I live here because I want to,
not because I can afford it.
- Father, don't you think...
- No! Can you cook?
If you want
good English cooking, yes.
Cod is as good as lobster
and much cheaper.
That depends on whether one has
a palate unsullied by cheap opiates.
If you mean what I think you mean,
this cost two shillings.
Yes, quite.
- I'll show Miss Marple to her room.
- Good idea.
That was Hillman the gardener. When
Father moves about, he calls him.
They're close.
Will you stay, Miss Marple... Jane?
- My dear lady, of course.
- I'm so glad.
Emma, come back here!
You've forgotten my medicine.
Excuse me.
Your room is the door
opposite the small stairs.
- I'll find it.
- May I give you those?
- All right?
- Yes, thank you.
Come out, at once!
I advise you to come out!
Very well...
You're Miss Emma's nephew, I presume?
Yes, Alexander Eastley.
How do you do?
How do you do?
I'm Jane. Jane Marple.
Yes... it is disappointing, isn't it?
I'd hoped for a Jayne Mansfield.
You have much in common
with your grandfather.
We're very alike in many ways.
Mind you, I'm not mean. He'll stop
that vase out of your wages.
It's just as well
you got out of the way, or...
It would have been my head
and you would get 10 years.
It's still possible.
Not only do you
not look like Jayne Mansfield,
you're not my idea of a maid either.
Well, quite honestly, I don't think
you'd be everybody's idea of a boy.
There's something
very fishy about you.
I can see you'll have to go -
after Mrs Kidder of course,
she's next, depressing creature.
- So was Annie.
- Annie?
Your predecessor. Thin as a rake
and a shocking cook. Can you cook?
I think I've done better than Annie.
Grandfather's like that too
and he hates a late dinner.
I'd leave the unpacking
if I were you.
In that case, you'd better
show me to the kitchen, Alexander.
Very well... Jane.
That's him - always shouting,
mostly about money. This way.
They're all waiting
for him to drop dead.
FrightfuI pack of vultures our
family, except possibly Aunt Emma.
Who are these vultures?
Uncle Harold -
stinking rich and just as mean.
Uncle Albert -
deadly dull, poor fellow.
Then there's Uncle Cedric.
He paints, but not for art's sake.
Last year,
he and one of his models...
- Alexander!
- He's like that.
- There was an Uncle Edmond.
- Was?
Yes, stopped a whole bomb
during the war all by himself.
There wasn't another man around
for miles - deserting probably.
Who can be held responsible for you?
Well put. Mummy's name was Edith,
but she's dead.
- Daddy is Brian Eastley.
- Oh?
The fighter ace - Battle of Britain.
- Oh, THE Brian Eastley.
- Yes.
I'll set him up in business when
I get my inheritance. Here we are.
There you are. About time. I'm off.
I wouldn't stay here after dark,
not for all the tea in China.
The pots and pans are
on that shelf there over the stove.
The groceries
and provisions are in there.
- Thank you.
- Cheerio.
- Good day.
- Good day.
- What's the matter?
- I was being polite.
Charming, isn't she, Jane?
- You should see this.
- What?
Phase four: Anti-Kidder campaign.
Dinner at eight please, Jane.
I see you made yourself comfortable.
I trust you have no objection?
I shouldn't make yourself
too comfortable if I was you.
Oh, who are you?
I'm the new maid, sir.
Dr Quimper.
You'll get used to seeing me here.
- Alexander, I suppose.
- Yes, I'm afraid so.
Mr Ackenthorpe will be expecting me.
- I'll show you up.
- That won't be...
Where on earth
are my confounded matches?
- It's you.
- Good morning.
What are you doing in here?
Snooping, I suppose?
Where are my matches?
If you're going to smoke,
I'll open a window.
I'm a great believer in fresh air.
Aren't you, Doctor?
Why, yes, I am... Miss...
Marple her name, marble her nature!
Let her give me double pneumonia!
If you can't kill me off one way,
you'll kill me off another.
You're going to live to be 100
in spite of anything I can do.
Then tell her to stop opening windows
and light my cheroot.
Any chance
that will send him to sleep, Doctor?
I'm afraid it's a stimulant.
- Roll over.
- Oh, dear.
Hold it closer, woman!
Your home town lost
a good horse doctor when you left.
In fact, I was bad with horses.
How did the birthday party go?
Did all the family get down?
Of course they did -
made a weekend of it,
free board and lodging
from Friday night.
- Friday.
- What's that to do with you?
Oh, nothing! It just happened to be
an interesting day for me too.
How old were you?
Mind your business.
Anyhow, it was a miserable weekend.
I hope it'll be a long time before
I have to put up with them again.
Not a nice way
to talk about one's family.
Not a nice family. You know what
that overgrown beatnik Cedric did?
He told Emma in front of me
she should get away and get married.
Trying to make her
as selfish as he is.
I don't know. If Emma did marry,
it wouldn't be such a bad thing.
Father, I thought I'd tell you,
I'm just going into town.
I'm leaving. Can I give you a lift?
Why do you want to go to town?
Can't she go for you?
It's tradesmen. A few bills to pay.
Oh, money, that's a different thing.
You can't trust anybody
these days. Off you go.
- May I be of service?
- Thank you.
Of course you can, save the price
of a taxi. I pay you enough as it is.
It will be on your bill.
Are you ready?
- Only my coat.
- Good.
Friday then, Mr Ackenthorpe.
Good day, Miss Marple.
Good day, Doctor.
If you don't
shut those windows, you'll be fired!
In that case, I shall require
four weeks wages in lieu of notice.
- Get out of my sight, woman!
- With pleasure!
Your weight isn't evenly distributed.
I'll have you know that I won
the Ladies Open Handicap in 1921.
- Really?
- You must have many things to do.
Not at all, I'm most interested.
We've never had a golf-playing maid.
This is the age of the common woman.
- You hooked.
- I'm aware of it.
- You know something?
- What?
I believe
you pulled those shots on purpose.
if you wish to be helpfuI at all,
will you kindly look for the hook
while I look for the slice.
- Found yours yet?
- Yes, have you?
- Disappeared without a trace.
- Fortunately I have some more.
At the present rate,
you're going to need them.
Perhaps you could
demonstrate the next one.
Let's see how close
you can get to those outbuildings.
Yes, I think that's possible.
You know perfectly well
it was superb for a boy of my age.
A chip and a putt
and I'd have holed out in three.
Does you grandfather
keep horses, Alexander?
He did. Now he just keeps relics
of a more spacious age.
Nostalgia, you know - a failing
of the old, I suppose. Like to look?
Well, I think
I'm old enough, don't you?
An old-fashioned pony chaise.
It was used for going to the village.
And the Victoria
for going to church?
Yes, on Sundays
in the summer I believe.
The brougham is
for the winter perhaps?
Yes, I expect so.
It's haunted here. Grandfather found
a man hanging from this rafter.
- Oh!
- He'd been dead for a week.
- All purple, you know.
- Alexander!
- What was that?
- I wonder.
- All right, I'll look.
- All yours.
Dear, dear.
We are nervous, aren't we?
- Pity.
- What did you expect to find?
- Bodies.
- What?
Live ones, of course.
Used to be quite a spot
for courting couples
till Grandfather got
Hillman to put a stop to it.
Quite extraordinary
the goings-on here.
- Apparently, this girl...
- That's enough.
There may be
some other poor bird trapped.
Look. Somebody else must have been
in here. This isn't Aunt Emma's.
It's mine. I must have dropped it.
Thank you so much.
It was bequeathed to me.
Are you on the run from the police?
Too much television. You must learn
to rationalize your imagination.
What's behind there?
More relics from the past?
Yes. The fruits
of Grandfather's Egyptian phase.
How interesting.
- No one's allowed in there.
- Let go!
What are you up to?
- The boy was showing me round.
- What boy?
- Alexander!
- You're lying.
Alexander, come out of there at once.
I thought discretion
the better part of valour.
He's not above
clipping a person's ear.
Your grandfather don't like snoopers.
Don't think I won't tell him neither.
Despite the double negatives,
I'm sure you will. Come, Jane.
Good for you, young man.
No! No!
Now listen, Mr Stringer,
I want you
to inform the police anonymously.
Don't mention me yet,
I wish to be
in at the kill so to speak.
Miss Marple, really!
All right, but it makes my blood
run cold to think of you there alone.
I was wondering perhaps
they have a vacancy for a gardener?
They've got one.
Very well, I'll do as you say.
The compact! If the murderer
should know that you have it...
I'll be carefuI, dear Mr Stringer.
Now, phone the Inspector right away.
- Well?
- I've never seen her before.
No, she's not from these parts.
Whoever she is,
I want her out of here at once.
If you hadn't left the barn unlocked,
we wouldn't have
these people poking their noses in.
- Are you all right, Father?
- Of course I'm all right.
I have seen a corpse before.
I'll be one myself soon.
Perhaps you'd better go back
to the house. I'll follow you up.
Whoever it was
tried to get her in here first.
It must have taken
the strength of a maniac to shift it.
- Inspector?
- Yes, Doctor?
I don't know if this is helpfuI.
- Go on.
- Well, the woman...
No one recognised her and her
clothes struck me as being foreign.
Perhaps French.
Yes, that's very interesting.
Thank you, Doctor.
Well, it was just a thought.
It may be a usefuI one. Thank you.
That explains why I didn't recognise
her. I know every face around here.
I'm sure you do.
I have to assume there's a connection
between her and the family.
I think
I'll get the whole bunch down here.
They hate the sight of each other.
So I believe. Anyway, routine first.
Have they got any other servants?
Yes, they have, Inspector.
Good Lord! You!
Dotty old me.
In there please.
It's only a cigarette packet -
of doubtfuI significance, I'd say.
I'll bear your views in mind.
Any idea
what you expect your fellows to find?
- Clues.
- Well, naturally.
Do you seriously
think they'll find anything?
Well, somebody dragged the body
from there over to there.
Something could have been dropped
in the process, don't you agree?
- Yes. Yes, I do.
- Did you find anything?
No, Inspector. Not a thing.
- The family is here by the way.
- Thank you.
I'll get around to them later.
They'll enjoy that, I'm sure.
Good hunting.
Some idiot strangles his girlfriend,
which she probably deserved
and what do they do -
swarm all over the place and
mess about in our private affairs.
I said to Inspector Haddock
or whatever his name is...
Craddock, sir. Shall I pour?
Of course.
I said to this fellow, Haddock,
that no member of my family
had ever seen the woman before.
- What makes you so sure of that?
- Cedric, this is absurd.
She wasn't from around here
and she was found in our stable.
One of us could have known her.
- Maybe she was your girlfriend.
- What?
Yes, yes,
I suppose Cedric has a point there.
- He never has a point.
- I mean from the police's viewpoint.
You're not too concerned
with the family reputation.
You're not a member of it,
are you, strictly speaking?
Who telephoned the police?
Oh, I know who did that!
Oh, who?
Obviously someone
who knew the body was there.
Any coffee left, Jane?
Help yourself.
- It certainly wasn't one of us.
- Who knows?
Who cares who did it?
The woman was probably a spy.
- That's absurd.
- The police think she was foreign.
Lots of English girls
go to Paris and buy clothes.
Decent ones don't.
Dr Quimper to see you,
Mr Ackenthorpe.
Still getting shot
with revitalizers, Father?
I'll take anything to outlive you lot
and keep my property
from your thieving hands.
I'll go and see if I can be of
any further assistance to the police.
Delicious coffee, Jane.
The Inspector said
he'd be interrogating you all later.
Better get your alibis ready.
He's a bright boy, that one.
The police say
the woman was murdered on Friday
and we were down here last Friday.
They will be interested in all of us.
None of us were here till quite late.
Yes, but the point is,
what were we all doing earlier?
- Albert, what about you?
- Me?
Don't tell me
you were in your office.
- I... well, no.
- Aha!
As a matter of fact, there was
a film that I went to see.
- A Brigitte Bardot?
- Cedric, this is preposterous.
Well, is it, Harold? What about you?
Or can your secretary verify
your movements on that day?
- None of your business.
- I'm in the clear.
- I was at my club.
- It has a back door, hasn't it?
Yes, I think so,
but I didn't get here until Saturday.
You could have lugged the body
up here on Friday, slipped back
and be sitting in your
usual chair when the club closed.
Can one of your
women friends vouch for you?
I'm certain my current comfort
will satisfy the Inspector completely
as no doubt will your secretary.
When you've finished, will you bring
me some coffee into the library?
Certainly, sir.
Well, well. Jumpy, isn't he?
- You're very calm.
- I've no reason not to be.
I've just been thinking.
If that woman was foreign...
Think of girls more often -
it might bring about some changes.
- I know it's laughable.
- I agree.
No, but I mean if she was French,
it could be her I suppose.
I give up. Could be who?
- That Martine woman.
- Martine?
Yes, that French farm girl
we had all the trouble about.
The one
Edmund was so infatuated with.
That was ages ago.
Yes, I know.
Still, I suppose it is possible.
Why should she turn up
dead in our stable 16 years later?
- It's preposterous.
- It isn't my idea.
Whose idea is it then?
Well, Emma's.
That's odd.
- Darling...
- No, PauI, please!
How much longer will we go on like
this? We've got to tell the old man.
- Not yet. Please, not yet.
- Why? Why?
PauI, I think someone
in the family may be a murderer.
I've had a letter.
I can't keep it to myself
any longer. I want you to read it.
I'm afraid
my French isn't up to this yet.
"Dear Miss Ackenthorpe, you will be
surprised to hear after so many years
that you have a sister-in-law.
I married Edmund two days
before he was killed in action.
I decided it was best to forget the
marriage, but I'm coming to England
and I find
I do wish to meet you all.
I write to you instead of your father
because I understand he is a sick man
and my existence may come as a shock
to him as it must be to you all.
Sincerely yours,
Martine Ackenthorpe."
I thought Edmund was killed
before they married.
- That's what we all thought.
- What's on your mind then?
Don't you see? The strangled woman,
it must have been Martine.
If she was really Edmund's widow,
she would have a share in the will.
Oh, I see.
PauI, what should I do?
- Have you told the others?
- No.
I did suggest to Albert that if she
was French, she might be Martine.
What did he say?
He said it was fantastic,
but I think he was worried.
- You have to tell the police.
- They'll think one of us did this.
- What else can you do?
- I don't know. I don't know.
I think you must tell them.
I'll have to think about this.
You'd better go.
- Good afternoon.
- Good afternoon.
- There you are.
- The train was late, Miss Marple.
Oh, good evening, Inspector.
I suppose you knew about
this compact business before I did?
I thought it best to bring
the Inspector in on this after all.
- Very wise. Very wise.
- I'm glad you think so.
Withholding information
is a very serious matter.
I know. I'm most awfully sorry.
Will you take tea?
Thank you, no.
Do you know what this means -
the compact being stolen from you?
Coffee perhaps?
The thief and the murderer are
almost certainly one and the same
and that he or she is in that house
and that your life may be in danger.
Oh, I say, do you really think so?
I must ask you
to give the whole thing up...
Indeed you must, Miss Marple.
Very well.
I'll give in my notice tomorrow.
Good. That's settled then.
It has to be
a month's notice, you know.
- Will you have a small beer?
- Miss Marple, I...
Oh, what's the use?
- Good night.
- Good night.
Well, now. How did you get on
at the probate registry?
Well, I think in view
of what the Inspector said...
- Did you see the will?
- Yes.
What did it say?
Old Mr Ackenthorpe's father obviously
didn't get on well with him.
I'm not surprised at that. Go on.
The house and the income
from the family fortune are his,
but he can't
touch the fortune itself.
- That's the first point.
- Yes?
The second point is that the fortune
goes to his children on his death,
to Emma, Cedric,
Harold and Albert.
Two of the others named in the will,
Edith and Edmund, are already dead.
Much more for the rest.
Young Alexander,
Edith's son, gets her share.
What about his father?
Next of kin only get a share
if there's no issue of a marriage.
Eastley's only interest
is how much Alexander gets.
- Dr Quimper to see you, sir.
- Oh, yes. Send him in.
Your call to the probate registry
has been usefuI.
- Morning.
- Morning. Sit down.
Thank you.
Have you found out
who the woman is yet?
The French police
haven't come up with anything.
You're assuming she's French?
The clothes and make-up
were made in Paris.
Is that what you wanted
to see me about?
No, sir.
I understand last Christmas, old Mr
Ackenthorpe had a stomach upset.
He's inclined to overindulge
when there's rich food about.
He said you asked questions as though
you suspected arsenic poisoning.
For a moment I did suspect
something was a bit odd.
- Didn't you run a food test?
- No.
- Why not?
- There was nothing positive.
No history of chronic gastric trouble
that one would expect to find in the
classic method of arsenic poisoning.
- You mean small regular doses?
- Exactly.
Excuse me.
Oh, put her on.
- Miss Ackenthorpe.
- Emma?
- Hello.
- Morning.
I have a letter from...
I see.
Well, would you
read the letter to me?
"Youu will be suurprised
to hear after so many years..."
Thank you. I'd like to send round for
that letter if you don't mind?
We'll check
with the French police. Thank you.
- Do you know what that was about?
- Yes.
- I do.
- Why didn't you tell me?
I'm in love with Emma, Inspector.
I want to marry her.
I told her
she should tell you about this.
You didn't insist?
No, it was important to me, to us,
that she made up her own mind.
I understand, Doctor.
Thank you. Is that all?
Is the dead woman Martine?
- Who else could it be?
- Was she killed by a family member?
I'd rather not answer that.
All right.
- Thank you.
- Thank you.
Well, sir?
- I'm worried, Bacon.
- About the doctor?
No, no, not him.
I'm worried about Miss Marple.
- Looking for something, Miss Marple?
- No!
Are you... are you all right?
Yes, perfectly, thank you.
What is it you want?
I thought I'd take up the old boy's
night cap and save you the trouble.
That's kind of you. It is ready.
A storm, I expect.
The electricity supply is rather
shaky, like the rest of the place.
- You're a bit shaky too, aren't you?
- No, not at all.
- Thank you.
- Thank you.
Oh, my goodness! What are you doing?
- Looking for light.
- You ought to be asleep.
I happen to be reading.
May I ask what you're doing?
Trying to provide light.
Oh, I see.
You won't find it there, you know.
- Indeed?
- It's a power failure.
Often happens. May I borrow this?
- Alexander, come back!
- Good night, Jane.
Who's that? Who is it?
Oh, Mr Cedric.
It's a power failure. Often happens.
- I'll have to find some candles.
- Just a minute.
My sister says you started
work here only a few days ago.
You don't look like a domestic.
I have to earn my living
like anybody else.
The day after you arrived,
the body was discovered.
- You found it.
- What makes you think that?
It fits and so neatly.
You telephoned the police.
I am not the person
who telephoned the police.
- You're not?
- No.
Who are you? What are you doing here?
I have already told you.
I'm going to watch you
very closely, Miss Marple... Jane.
Oh, Hillman.
I want to have a word with you.
Get out!
Oh... help!
What is it?
Albert. See to Albert...
Alexander, call the doctor. Quickly!
There was nothing I could do for him.
How are the others?
Emma, Cedric, Harold and Eastley have
had only minor effects.
The old man will be all right.
He's a tough old bird.
They will recover by morning.
- No doubt about the cause?
- No.
- They were all poisoned.
- Well... thank you, Doctor.
Quimper! Quimper!
Harold - I might have expected him
to bellow the hardest.
This is the last chicken stock.
- Finished?
- Just about.
See that stuff gets to the lab.
That's it for tonight.
Mushroom soup, curried duck and rice
and apple pie.
Thank you.
- Mushroom soup out of a can?
- Certainly not.
Half a pound of mushrooms,
chicken stock, milk, flour,
lemon juice, a touch of herbs...
Hmm. Mushrooms?
I had some of the soup myself -
Oh, I'm sure! The pie?
I'm afraid I never can resist
my own pie, Inspector.
Anybody else's, of course.
- The curry?
- Exactly.
Good, of course,
but rice you see... fattening...
and as I was having the pie...
Where did the duck come from?
Oh, those... Mr Harold shot them.
He seems to be rather fond
of killing things.
Alexander doesn't seem
to have had any curry either?
No. I thought it would appeal to him.
Curious child.
Well, did anyone enter the kitchen
while the cooking was going on?
Not while I was there.
I do have other duties, you know.
Anyone could have come in.
Six people are poisoned...
only one dies.
I'm thinking about that too,
Message from the Chief Constable.
- He's waiting for your report.
- All right.
- In person, sir.
- Get the car, I'll be a minute.
Very good.
I think the two killings
are connected, don't you?
Yes, I do.
We've got to find out
who has that compact.
I've only been able to search
one room.
- Oh, whose?
- Unfortunately, Albert's.
- Miss Marple, I have to go.
- Oh, yes, I know.
A policeman's work is never done.
Nor a woman's.
I was going to say,
please be carefuI.
If you think of anything,
do take me into your confidence.
The lab boys turned it up
as arsenic in the curry.
Not a lot, just enough for
stomach aches. Not enough to kill.
- So Albert had an extra dose?
- Why poison the others at all?
If the poisoner is a member of
the family, he had to be ill as well.
Well, say it isn't, sir.
I mean that gardener of theirs -
Locals say he's in for a nice bequest
when old Ackenthorpe goes.
- It is a possibility.
- You're forgetting the dead woman.
This poisoning means
she was Martine Ackenthorpe.
Have the French police
come up with something then?
Only that there's no record
of a marriage.
The village where Ackenthorpe
was stationed was blown to bits.
- All files were destroyed.
- Well?
Don't you see,
it's the pattern of the killings.
Only a family member
would want her dead too.
Yes, kill off all your relations in
easy stages except the old man.
When he dies naturally,
inherit the fortune and the property.
Albert must have got his second dose
after dinner, possibly in a drink.
Don't drink that.
- Why not?
- Because it's lunch time.
Oh! What is it?
Beef broth and baked custard.
- Beef broth? I ordered beefsteak.
- The doctor said beef broth.
To blazes with him!
I give the orders.
I'm sick of slops. Take it away!
Hillman, another bottle.
Surely you know
that if the woman was Martine,
by giving the letter to the police
the finger points at one of us.
Not only for her death,
but Albert's too.
- Exactly. One of us.
- I expected that from you!
Oh, come now,
you're thinking exactly as I am.
If you didn't do it...
you're thinking it was me.
Stop it! Stop it!
Or even you, dear Emma.
I think we've had enough
of this nonsense.
I bet the police don't think so.
Say what you like,
but please leave Emma out of it.
Well, it could be argued
that Emma kept that letter to herself
to use it to her own advantage.
You'd better explain that.
Well, the moment Martine's body
was discovered
everyone in this family was under
suspicion, including you, Emma.
The moment you produced the letter,
everyone was under suspicion...
excluding you.
- I hadn't thought of it like that.
- You must be round the bend.
The woman was strangled. Do you think
your sister capable of that?
Oh, but Emma's an attractive woman,
don't you think so?
A pretty lady doesn't need to do
her own dirty work.
Emma, let's leave them to it.
Now, now, Eastley. Emma has her eye
on the doctor, you know.
It won't be so easy for you to marry
into the family again.
Oh, that hit home, didn't it?
Yes and I'm about ready
to break your blasted neck.
Very possibly,
but tell me something first.
Did you meet Emma secretly the night
before the body was found?
- Well, I...
- Hillman saw you.
We did meet that night, yes.
- He asked me to mediate with Father.
- Oh, what for?
I wanted to borrow money.
Oh, my goodness!
What are you doing?
- Making up the bed.
- You made it up this morning.
Yes but the pillowslips
need changing.
They look all right to me.
But not to me.
Oh, what am I doing?
I do wish that woman would hurry up.
They know I don't like the dark.
Are you afraid
some man will get you?
It's funny how things
come together.
My sister's eldest had measles
and then her Ernie broke his arm
and her husband came out all over
with boils, all in the same week.
You wouldn't believe it, would you?
It will be the same thing here.
First that nasty murder,
then Mr Albert poisoned.
Who's going to be next?
Things always go in threes.
Here you are.
Sorry to keep you, but the doctor was
with Mr Ackenthorpe.
Hmm! Long wait for very little.
The younger generation.
Well, I don't know!
What's the matter?
It's Mr Harold.
Did he use it or did somebody else
pull the trigger?
It adds up if it was suicide.
Harold killed the other two,
got cold feet
and took the easy way out.
They all knew he liked shooting
before dinner at the Hall.
He was shot from a two-inch range.
All right.
Someone he knows casually
asks him for the gun and...
It could still be suicide.
That's what the murderer
wants us to think.
We can't risk any more killings.
Come on.
- Where to, sir?
- The Hall.
I'll find the compact even if I have
to turn the place upside down.
Excuse me, sir,
there's a Miss Marple to see you.
- Come in. Good afternoon.
- You were going somewhere?
- Yes.
- I'll come to the point at once.
BeautifuI little piece, isn't it?
- Who had it?
- Alexander.
I should have realised.
That boy's incorrigible.
Playing it at midnight like that.
- So we're back where we began?
- No, Inspector.
I think I know who our murderer is.
The difficulty is getting him
to show his hand.
- Sit down, Miss Marple.
- Thank you.
Hold that expression.
Oh, pity, you spoilt it.
What's the matter?
Things not working out for you?
You make everything you say
sound like an insinuation.
He works at it.
Do stop fussing, Quimper.
If I wish to come down,
I shall do so.
I think this chair, Hillman.
- Father, don't you...
- Don't start!
Sorry, Emma,
but once his mind is made up...
I'm not going to stay up there
all alone.
Might get murdered in my bed.
At least there's safety in numbers.
- I quite agree with you.
- That makes a nice change.
I want a drink.
No, not you... Quimper.
Then I must leave.
Don't smother me with it,
put it over my knees!
This is all very cosy.
How about a rubber of bridge?
Just a thought!
What have you got there, boy?
A charming little thing.
French, second empire.
Valuable, I'd say.
Where did you get it?
It belongs to Miss Marple.
- You had better give it back.
- I only borrowed it.
I'll drop it in on my way to bed.
- Come in, Doctor.
- You were expecting me?
- Didn't Alexander tell you?
- Tell me what?
ForgetfuI boy.
I have a sore throat
and asked him to ask you
to look at it before you left.
I see.
I haven't had one of these throats
in years.
Well you've been lucky, Miss Marple.
Any headaches?
No, just the sore throat.
Well, we'll have a look.
This is attractive.
- Yes, isn't it?
- Where did you get it?
- I found it.
- Oh, where?
- In the stables here.
- Really?
Open wide, please.
- Say, "Ahh".
- Ahh.
No inflammation.
Don't you think that was dishonest,
keeping the compact?
Under the circumstances, Doctor, no.
- Is there any swelling?
- I don't think so.
I've seen you like that once before,
your hands at a woman's throat.
It was on a train
and you were strangling her.
- That's quite an allegation.
- I have a few more.
You want the compact because
you had given it to that woman
and it might be traced back to you.
- I think she was your wife.
- Do you?
You killed her after you had written
that letter to Emma.
- You signed it Martine Ackenthorpe.
- Why should I do that?
The murder - so that you would then
be free to marry Emma.
The letter - so that people would
think the dead woman was Martine
and look among the family
for the killer...
...never at you.
How did you arrive
at this fascinating hypothesis?
It was I who found her body.
Martine was, or is, for all I know,
a Normandy peasant.
The dead woman
had never worked on a farm.
I saw her hands.
- Go on.
- Certainly.
You proceeded to augment
your prospects... eliminating Albert and Harold.
How, conceivably?
You contrived to introduce arsenic
into my curry,
which I find unforgivable,
knowing that you would be asked
to deal with the after-effects.
Easy then to give Albert
his final dose in the medicine.
And Harold?
You shot him
and made it look like suicide.
Ingenious, I must admit.
More than that.
Now you are here to secure
your wife's compact...
...a fair case.
Yes, a pity you won't be able
to present it.
One more murder, Doctor,
might be one too many.
This won't look like murder,
Miss Marple.
The death certificate signed by me
will register heart failure.
- All right?
- Yes, thank you.
You're under arrest. I warn you...
That everything was recorded
and will be used in evidence.
You were right about everything.
You're a very brave woman,
Miss Marple. Good night.
About time too!
I was coming up to see you
before leaving.
No need to leave.
I have my own home.
- Sell it!
- Why on earth should I?
taking one thing and another...
...I mean, you're a fair cook
and... er... you seem to have
your wits about you and...
Well, I've decided to marry you.
- Well?
- Well, I'm honoured, of course.
Yes, but come to the point.
- I'm afraid that cannot be.
- Why?
Well if I ever do embark on such
a venture, there is someone else.
Nonsense! I don't believe it.
Who would have you?
Apparently you for one,
Mr Ackenthorpe.
The woman is completely unbalanced!
- Oh, Miss Marple, I am so glad...
- How good of you to come.
- Let me help.
- Thank you.