Director: David Palamaro
Cast: Christopher Soren Kelly, Jessica Graham, Sheila Cutchlow
Production Company: No-Money Enterprises
Runtime: 76 minutes
I love watching old murder mysteries. They’re still enjoyable, even after all these years. It’s nice when a new movie comes along that’s made in the spirit of that bygone genre. Murder Made Easy (2017) falls into that category, and easily balances comedy with suspense.
In the movie, Joan (Jessica Graham) and Michael (Christopher Soren Kelly) invite their closest friends to dinner so they can discuss the death of Joan’s husband Neil. Sinister secrets are revealed along the way, and murder is definitely on the menu.
Fans of films like Murder on the Orient Express (1974), Death on the Nile (1978), and Ten Little Indians (1965) should enjoy this one as well. Murder Made Easy has the vibe of an Agatha Christie mystery, though it also has elements of an Alfred Hitchcock suspense film.
A variety of interesting and kooky characters will keep you interested. There are many witty moments. Cricket (Emilia Richeson) is a spiritual environmentalist that I found amusing. I also enjoyed all the in-jokes about indie filmmaking thanks to Damien (Daniel Ahearn).
Menu cards with courses are displayed between each segment, which is a great touch. I also enjoyed seeing all the different meals that were served to the guests. Repetitive moments can make the viewer think they know what will happen next. That makes the film’s surprises all the more special.
The music by Sean Spillane is a big part of the movie. His score successfully sets the mood, and is a throwback to films from another era. The music is both dramatic and playful when the need arises. I particularly thought the opening theme was right out of a noir film.
The movie isn’t shot in a typical way. The camera moves freely between each of the characters in long flowing scenes. This adds to the theatrical feel of the movie. The film has only one location, just like most theatre productions. References to The Mousetrap also help with this connection.
Murder Made Easy is a fun movie that’s filled with memorable characters. The film had its world premiere at the Women in Horror Film Festival, where it won the Indie Spirit Award. It’s refreshing to see that intelligent dialogue and real substance hasn’t gone out of style.
– John Migliore
For more information on the film, check out the links below…