Maigret plunges into the murky Parisian underworld. A series of vicious, murderous attacks on three wealthy farms in Picardy hit the national headlines and the elite Brigade Criminelle at the Quay Des Orfevres is called upon to lend its expertise in tracking down the brutal gang responsible for the slaughter. However, Inspector Maigret is resolute in investigating the murder of an obscure anonymous Parisian, an investigation that ultimately solves both crimes.
|Release Date||:||December 5, 2016|
|Genres||:||Mystery, Drama, Crime|
|Production Countries||:||Hungary, United Kingdom|
|Casts||:||Rowan Atkinson, Lucy Cohu, Shaun Dingwall, Leo Staar, Ian Puleston-Davies, Aidan McArdle, Anamaria Marinca, Hugh Simon, Mark Heap, Peter Schueller, John Light, Nathalie Armin, Philip Starnier, Katia Bokor, Ann Queensberry, Tim Chipping, Dorrottya Hais, Iván Fenyő, Dénes Bernáth, Amber Anderson, Michael FitzGerald|
|Plot Keywords||:||detective, remake|
Pleased as I am to find that Rowan Atkinson can play straight roles, the Maigrets who have gone before(Cremer, Gabin, Gambon and co) have no competition in the new series. In spite of some excellent performances (Madame Maigret radiates decency and warmth while scarcely saying a word, whether she's serving drinks,comforting a widow or simply giving Maigret an extremely speaking look), "Maigret's Dead Man" never rises from the floor due to lackluster directing. All those distorted shots, lurid lighting and "artistic" camera angles gave me the impression that John East had seen Moulin Rouge far too often.
Even though we are treated to some background detail that those who have read the original novels will find pleasing (as for example Maigret's love of a hot coal fire to roast himself before in order to think a case through), too many things were ever so slightly wrong. I can't blame it on the fact that Hungary has to do duty for postwar Paris; the Bruno Cremer series was also shot in Central Europe, but at least they got the lighting and architecture right for Paris. The direction was slow and lackluster, the police officers supposedly masquerading as habitues in a local bistro stuck out a mile in their gabardines and hats, and the film went on for far too long. A judicious use of sound stages would have served the purpose much better.
A strange offering for Christmas Day, what with torture and mass murder, sociopaths and showgirls. With such a volatile mixture, how did it all turn out so very bland?