For a director whose work reveals a fascination with the reconstruction of actual events, especially famous murder cases (The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing, Compulsion, The Boston Strangler), Richard Fleischer seems oddly at sea with the Christie/Evans cause célèbre. Although all the '40s period details are (presumably) correct - Clive Exton's script is based on Ludovic Kennedy's book - none of the ambience of post-war Britain is caught on screen. Also, by concentrating closely on Christie (Attenborough) and the hysterical Evans (Hurt), the director leaves himself open to the excesses of British character acting. The result is a melodrama rather than an examination of criminal pathology.
Cast and crew