Murder On The Orient Express Script - Dialogue Transcript

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Murder On The Orient Express Script





- Your ticket, please.

- Oh, yes.



- Welcome aboard, Miss Debenham.

- Thank you.



Bosporus Ferry will shortly depart

from Istanbul Sirkeci Station,



connecting with the Orient Express.



Here's your ticket,

Monsieur Poirot.



I'm afraid you've still got another hour.



Well, then, please do not wait.



Not wait? After all you've

done for us, Monsieur Poirot?



My general's orders were to

ensure your safe departure.



He also wished me

to thank you again



for saving the honor of the British

garrison in Jordan.



The brigadier's confession

was opportune.



I say, how did you do it?



Was it the old thumbscrew,

you know, the rack?



Yes. Well, you'll be able to rest

as soon as you get to Stamboul.






The church of Santa Sofia

is absolutely magnificent.



You have seen it?






Come on.



Move. Come on.



Get up. Come on.






I hope we did the right thing booking

you into a hotel on the European side



rather than the Asian side.



I have no prejudice against

either continent.



The... The crossing

should be pleasant.



The Bosporus is always calm.



You have crossed by the ferry?






Welcome, Colonel Arbu...



Arbu... Arbut...






The Bosporus Ferry will shortly

depart for Istanbul Sirkeci Station,



connecting with the Orient Express.



Not now.



Not now. When it's all over.

When it's behind us. Then.



What a funny little man.



Obviously a frog.



It can be important.



...between East and West, where you

can eat the finest Oriental food.



Good evening, sir.

This way, please.



Ecco finalmente un amico.



Monsieur Poirot.






How are you, my friend?



- Good to see you.

- You have saved me from apoplexy.



- Sit down.

- Thank you.



You have not dined well.



The skewers are of better quality

than the kebab.



The bottle is more

distinguished than its wine.



And the coffee.



Fortunately, I have been called

to London. I leave tonight.



- On the Orient Express?

- How else?



Evviva! I have a traveling companion.




Well, where shall we dine?



I am desolate, Monsieur Poirot.



There is not one single first-class

sleeping berth on the entire train.



- What? In December?

- In December, signor.



Has Bulgaria declared war on Turkey?



Are the aristocracy fleeing

the country?



I am a director of the line,



Monsieur Hercule Poirot

is not only a detective



of international fame and distinction,

but he is also my personal friend.



Signor Bianchi, Monsieur Poirot...



Courage, my friend,

we'll arrange something.




We must go. Come on.



The Orient Express will depart

from platform one at   p. M.



For Uzonköprü, Sofia, Belgrade,



Zagreb, Brod, Trieste, Venice,

Milan, Lausanne,



Bazel, Paris, Calais,



with connections for London.



Bonsoir, Pierre.



Madame la Princesse,

mes hommages!



Numéro quatorze.



- Fräulein Schmidt, Willkommen!

- Guten Tag.



Bett. Nummer sechs.



- Danke schön.

- Bitte schön.



Orient Express departs from

platform one at   p. M.



Az Andrenyi Grófot es Gröfnét

mindig szívesen látom.



A   -tes.



Mrs. Hubbard.

It's always an honor to greet you.



You have your favorite number,   .



Ecco, Signor Bianchi.




Numero nove. Come sempre.



Grazie, Pierre. I understand

that you are full up.



It's unbelievable, signor.

All the world elects to travel tonight.



Nonetheless, you must find room

for Monsieur Poirot here.



Monsieur Hercule Poirot?



- The famous...

- Precisely.



And he is also a personal

friend of mine.



Please be so good as to direct...



Fröken Ohlsson, god afton!

Plats nummer sju.






Something is lost?



My little medal of St. Christopher,



to bring me luck and deliver...



Deliver me from evil.



Madame. Madame, lucky tooth

from St. Augustine of Hippo.



Madame. Madame, lucky tooth

from St. Augustine of Hippo.



- Lucky Buddha, madame?

- Madame, lucky Buddha.



Thank God, my St. Christopher.



St. Christopher.



You see, my friend has been

urgently called to London



on a matter of

international importance,



and I have given him my

personal assurance



that you will secure an accommodation

for him on the coach to Calais.



- But, Signor Bianchi, I have already...

- Hector...



Excuse me, excuse me, gentlemen,

but Mr. Ratchett has reservations,



and we'd be grateful if we could

board immediately.



Mr. Ratchett.



Welcome to the number ten.



Mr. Beddoes, the lower berth

in number one.



Mr. McQueen, the lower berth

in number four.



- The upper berth is...

- As arranged.



Now, Pierre, it is cold.



Now we can place Monsieur

Poirot in the number   



which is always kept vacant.



It is taken, signor, by a Mr. Hardman.



Then as a director of the line,



I command you to place

Monsieur Poirot



in what we know to be the empty berth

above Mr. McQueen's number four.






At least you can get two tips.



- Pardon, monsieur.

- Sorry.



- Pardon.

- Excuse me, signor.



Well, my second husband,

Mr. Hubbard, would have raised hell.



No place for my makeup bag,

no ice in my drinking water,



and the hot water burps as it

comes out of the faucet.






Have courage, my friend.

It is the last compartment but one.









I think there's a mistake.



Je crois que vous avez

fait une erreur.



Mr. McQueen, there is no

other berth on the train.



Monsieur Poirot has to come in here.



Voilà, monsieur, all is arranged.



Yours is the upper berth,

the number four.



We start in one minute.



I apologize if I have

incommoded you here.



However, it is for one

night only at Belgrade Station.



Oh, I see. At Belgrade,

you're... You're getting off.



Better than the hotel?



I shall probably keep

the menu as a souvenir.



Hector, I ordered three Islamic

  th-century, perforated pottery bowls



and six beakers.



They delivered only five beakers,

and one of the bowls arrived chipped,



which it was not when I paid for it.



Through the nose.



- Send a telegram from Belgrade.

- Yes. Yes, Mr. Ratchett.



What's the matter? You look tired.



- I slept badly.

- Yeah, why?



The Belgian in the upper berth snored.



Really? Any other

unanswered letters on file?



Only the anonymous ones.



We can't answer those, can we?



You'd better go catch up

on your sleep...



...before the Belgian gentleman

gets back to your compartment.



Go on.



Hi. My name's Hardman.



Call me Dick.



- Foscarelli. Call me Gino.

- How are you?






Mr. Beddoes.



For the pen of a Balzac.



For three days, all these people,

these total strangers,



meet in a single train whose

engine controls their destiny.



Yes, I know. We are both

envious of the husband.






Is the husband as British

as his tweeds?



Oh, heaven forbid.

He's a hot-blooded Hungarian.



If you but look at his wife,

he will cease to be a diplomat.



Thank God we are not young.



My second husband said

always to ask for change in dollars



or at worst, sterling.



So for Pete's sake,

what's a drachma?



It is... What do you call it...?

The currency...



My second husband also said,

"Take a book of food tickets, Mama,



"and you'll have no problem,

no problem at all."



That just isn't so.



First there's this ten-percent tip. Five

would've done the steward more...



I think Miss Ohlsson has a headache.



Would you forgive us if we went back

to the compartment, Mrs. Hubbard?



Gladly, if you must.



If you need aspirin,

I always carry it on my person.



I mistrust foreign drugs.



You must excuse me,

Mrs. Hubbard is upon us.



What's the matter with him?

Train-sick or something?



Some of us, in the words of the divine

Greta Garbo, "want to be alone".



And for dinner this evening?



You will have the goodness

to serve me the poached sole



with one new potato



and a small green salad

with no dressing. Hildegarde.



Who was that majestic lady?



- The Princess Dragomiroff.

- I have heard.



Pardon me, sir.



I wonder if you could

oblige me with a light.






Thank you.

My name is Ratchett.



Do I have the pleasure of speaking

to Mr. Hercule Poirot?



The pleasure possibly, Mr. Ratchett,

the intention certainly.



You asked me for a light.



I offered you one,

and you have not used it.



One can deduce that without

acute mental exhaustion.



That's wonderful. Sit down, sir.



- For a moment.

- Just for a moment.



Thank you very much.



Well, Mr. Poirot.



- Poirot.

- How's that?



- Poirot.

- Oh, Poirot. Right.



I just wanted to say that in my country

we also come quickly to the point.



I want you to take a job on for me.



It means big money.



Very big money.



What is the case, or, as you put it, the

job which you wish me to undertake?



Mr. Poirot, I'm a rich man.



Naturally, men in my

position have enemies.



Only one.



Now, what the hell

do you mean by that?



Merely that when a man is in a position

to have, as you say, enemies,



it does not usually resolve

itself into one enemy only.



Oh. Oh, sure. Sure. I appreciate that.



What is your profession?



I'm retired.



- From what?

- Business.



What sort of business?



Baby food.



But what does that matter?

What matters is my safety.



You are in danger?



My life has been threatened,

Mr. Poirot.



My secretary can show

you two letters on file.



And I... can show you this.



I sleep on it.



Mr. Poirot...



...     dollars.






Ten thousand?



Fifteen thousand.



Mr. Ratchett, I have

made enough money



to satisfy both my needs

and my caprices.



I take only such cases now

as interest me,



and to be frank, my interest

in your case is... dwindling.



Belgrade Station.



The Orient Express will

depart in five minutes.



Monsieur Poirot.



I am transferring Signor Bianchi's

luggage to the Pullman.



He's giving you

his own compartment.



But you cannot sit up all night.



My dear friend,

do not concern yourself.



Since you are going to England,

it is better for you



to stay on the through coach

to Calais.



Now, Pierre has made me

very comfortable.



There is no one in the Pullman

but one Greek doctor. Ecco.



- Such generosity deserves my thanks.

- Buon riposa.



- Monsieur Poirot.

- Pierre,



- could I have some clean towels and...

- Yes, monsieur.



Who are my new neighbors?



To the left, monsieur,

the Swedish lady, Miss Ohlsson,



shares seven and eight with

the English lady, Miss Debenham.



And to the right, in number ten,

is Mr. Ratchett.



And where is the loquacious

Mrs. Hubbard?



I should like to get some

sleep tonight.



Beyond Mr. Ratchett,

in the number   .



She is still too near.



Good night, Mr. Beddoes.






Who is it?



It's me, sir, Beddoes,

with your sedative.



Come in.



Thank you, Pierre. Good night.



Good night, monsieur,

and pleasant dreams in number nine.



- How many drops?

- Of the valerian?



- Two, sir, as you said.

- OK.



No, no. Put it on the table.



And tell Mr. McQueen I want

to see the text of the telegram



he sent from Belgrade.



Very well, sir.



He wants you.



Come in.



La belle Comtesse.



Ce n'est rien.

C'était un cauchemar.



Bien, Mr. Ratchett.

May you now have pleasant dreams.



C'est le silence de mort.



Snowdrift. Mon Dieu. Quelle nuit.



So now there's a man in my room.



I woke up in the dark

three minutes ago,



and there was a man hiding

in this compartment. I sensed it.



What's more, I know who he was

because I absent-mindedly



nearly walked through

his open door earlier this evening.



"Madame," said this Mr. Ratchett,



"If you'd done this    years ago,

I'd have said come in."



Twenty years ago?

Why, I'd only have been   .



If there should be a reoccurrence,

do not hesitate to ring, madame.



Enfin c'est le comble.



Evidemment, j'ai une crise de nerfs.



It's me, sir, Beddoes,

with your pick-me-up.



Your amber moon, Mr. Ratchett.



Your passkey.



The chain.



Pierre, touch nothing.



Where are Signor Bianchi

and the Greek doctor?



In the dining car, monsieur.



Fetch them at once.



Well, can't you tap

the telephone wires?



- Or fire a rocket, or something?

- This is not a ship, madame.



- Where exactly are we?

- We are between Vinkovci and Brod.



- But in what country?

- In Yugoslavia.



The Balkans.

What else can you expect?



Snow is God's will.

And all is for the best.



Yeah, but how long do you think before

we can start getting out of here?



As soon as the stationmaster

at Brod sees



that we do not arrive on time,

he will send...



Dr. Constantine,

Monsieur Poirot wants to see you.



And you too, Signor Bianchi.



Forgive me, ladies and gentlemen.



Only God's forgiveness is important.



Ich mochte meine Prinzessin




Signor Bianchi

and Dr. Constantine.



Mind the broken glass, gentlemen.



Pupils still slightly dilated.

Could've been drugged.



- Was drugged.

- With what?



There's a smell of valerian,

which is harmless,



but something must've been added.



- May I close his eyes now?

- I wish you would.



Why did he lose so much blood?



- Can I pull back the bedclothes?

- By all means.



Mr. Ratchett has been

frontally stabbed



ten,       times.



- Oh, Dio.

- Mon pauvre.



If you must go whoop-whoop,

please go whoop-whoop



not to windward, but to leeward.

Help him, Pierre.



There is something in the pocket.



Permit me.



- His watch.

- The time of death.



I can definitely say

that death occurred



between midnight

and   in the morning.



That would fit.



I myself heard him cry out and ring for

the conductor at    minutes to  .



When Pierre arrived, he apologized



and said he had been

having a cauchemar.



A nightmare.



Then I heard him

use his washbasin.



And that is the last thing known.



I beg of you, monsieur.

You cannot refuse.



But it is the duty

of the Yugoslavian police.



Oh, what, monsieur, to question

my passengers on my line? Never.



Now you must solve the mystery.



When we get to Brod, if we ever do,



we present the police with

a fait accompli.



We say that a murder has occurred.

There is the criminal.



I should like

the Pullman coach reserved



for the investigation's headquarters.



It will be at your disposal.



And a plan of the Calais coach

with the names and locations



- of all the people in it.

- Yes, it will be there.



And the passports of all

the passengers concerned.



Yes, you can even have mine.



I go to make a special

announcement now. Grazie.



Bring all the passports

to Monsieur Poirot.



Are there any other

passengers on the train?



In the Pullman coach,

nobody but myself and Mr. Bianchi.






Then we must concentrate

on the Calais coach.



Where, in my amateur opinion,

the murderer is with us now.



Ladies and gentlemen.

Please, please, patience.



You must have patience.

Now, you will all get the chance



to state your views to Monsieur Poirot

at his own good time.



- Now, please...

- It is not good time. It is bad time.



God's laws have been bust,

thou shalt not kill.



And why was I not notified at once,

Signor... Mr. Bianchi?



- I was his nearest associate.

- And I was nearest to his murderer.



You mean you saw the man?

You can identify the murderer?



I mean nothing of the kind.



I mean there was a man

in my compartment last night.



It was pitch-dark, of course,

and my eyes were closed in terror.



Then how did you know it was a man?



Because I've enjoyed very warm

relationships with both my husbands.



- With your eyes closed?

- That helped.



- Excuse me.

- Anyway, the man smelt of tobacco.



Mr. McQueen,

Monsieur Poirot would be grateful



for a few minutes of your time.



- Excuse me.

- Don't you agree the man



must've entered my compartment

to gain access to Mr. Ratchett?



I can think of no other reason,




Pierre, your passkey.



Voilà, monsieur.



And will you discreetly procure

me a lady's hatbox,



one of the big, old-fashioned kind,



perhaps from the

Princess Dragomiroff's maid?



Give me five minutes, doctor.



Mr. McQueen, I regret

to have kept you waiting,



but there has been much to establish.



Please be seated. Now,

Mr. McQueen, I should be grateful



for anything you can usefully tell me.

What, for example, is...?



Let's get just a couple

of things straight first, Mr. Poirot.



Who, for example, are you,

and what is your status here?



Excuse me.



Monsieur Poirot is a detective,



officially delegated to investigate

this case by me.



Let us proceed with the matter in

hand. Your relationship with Ratchett?



I'm his... I was his secretary.



- For how long?

- A year, give or take.



- Where did you meet?

- In Persia.



He was collecting Gorgan pottery

with considerable success.



And I was trying to collect oil

concessions, you know,



with so little success

that I went bankrupt,



and he offered me the job. I took it.



- And since then?

- Well, we've traveled around.



He was hampered

by not knowing any languages.



I acted more as his courier

than as his secretary.



It was a pleasant enough job.



What part of America

did Ratchett come from?



I don't know.



The fact is, he never talked

about his background.



- Why, do you think?

- Well, I used to...



Well, I began to believe

that he had left America



to escape something, you know.



Or someone. And until a couple

of weeks ago, I think he succeeded.



And then?



Well, he began to get these

anonymous letters,



threatening letters, like these.



"I kill killers."



"Prepare to die."



- How brief.

- But in a sense, how complicated.



Last night, I noticed you dispatching

a telegram from Belgrade Station.



That's right.

Let's see, he sent for me



to see the text

right after we left Belgrade.



And then he went...

Yeah, it was the last I ever saw of him.



Were there any other

threatening letters?



Yeah, but none that

I was allowed to read.



He used to... He used to burn them.



That explains...






My interest in hatboxes.



Precisely what I needed.



Doctor, first the wounds.



- You counted a dozen?

- Yes.



Five are deep,

of which three are lethal.



The rest are shallow.



And two...



...are so slight as to be

mere scratches.



What does that suggest?



That there were two murderers,

a strong man and a weak man?



Or a weak woman.



Or a strong man stabbing

the victim both strongly



and weakly in order to confuse us.



At least we know that

by the time of the murder,



Ratchett was too drugged to cry out

or defend himself with this.



But how did you guess...?



I didn't. He showed it to me

when he offered me $     



to be his bodyguard and I refused.



Ought I to have accepted?



Now, let us consider the ashtray.



Two different matches.



A smoked cigar.



- A pipe cleaner...

- And this.



- The initial H.

- That should not be hard to identify.



I wonder, Christian name or surname?



We must wait until

we examine the passports.



Bianchi, doctor,



has it occurred to you that there

are too many clues in this room?



Let us proceed by examining what

I hope will prove to be the last of them.



The burnt paper.



I use it for the mustaches.



What has that to do

with mustaches?



To melt the wax.



Observe, memorize,

you are my only witnesses.



- A-l-S-Y A-R-M-S.

- What does that mean?



It means we know

the true identity of Mr. Ratchett.



And why he had to leave America.



Do you remember

the Armstrong case?



Of course, the kidnapping of that

little American girl, and the killing.



Who does not?



Do you remember the name

of the child?



Certamente. It was Daisy.












Space, A-R-M-S.



Daisy Armstrong.



- And Ratchett was her murderer?

- Well, no, the actual murderer



was tried, sentenced

and electrocuted.



But he was only the number two.



The subordinate of a boss whom,

at first, he was too terrified to identify.



Only on the eve of his electrocution

did he give the name of the boss,



who by then had disappeared

with the ransom money.



I remember feeling ashamed

that he had an Italian name.






Che mostro. He had

a child's blood on his hands.



He had worse than that.



After the shock

of the body's discovery,



Mrs. Armstrong gave premature birth

to a stillborn child,



and herself died in the process.



Her husband, Colonel Armstrong,



once a brave officer in

the Scots Guard, shot himself,



and Mrs. Armstrong's personal maid,



who came wrongly

under suspicion of complicity,



threw herself from her

bedroom window and she died,



so five deaths, five.



Then I thank heaven that Giuseppe,

who spilt so much blood in his lifetime,



should have his own blood

spilt now.



Excellent, Pierre. And could you

summon the passengers to me here?



One by one in this order except

for the Princess Dragomiroff,



who is not only of royal blood, but also

much older than she tries not to look.



And, Pierre, since you are here

already, we can conveniently start



by questioning you.



Your full name is Pierre Paul Michel.



- Correct, monsieur.

- Two male saints' names.



You must be greatly blessed.



I've had my share

of good fortune, monsieur.



So... And of bad.

I note the cancellation



of your wife's photograph

nearly five years ago.



- She is deceased.

- She died, monsieur.



Of grief at the death

of our only daughter.



From scarlet fever.



I am truly sorry.



Let us talk of less

distressing matters.



On the night of the murder,

after we left Belgrade,



who were the last passengers

to retire to their compartment?



Show me on the diagram.



About  :   I remember seeing

the English colonel say good night



to Mr. McQueen outside

number three and four.



I saw him walk back into his

compartment, number   



which he did not leave.



And after that,

did no one reemerge?



No, but there was one lady

who opened a door,



I don't know which, and walked



in the direction of the toilet



at the far end of the corridor,

next to the dining car.



- Did you see her return?

- No, monsieur.



It is possible

I was answering a bell.



That reminds me of a final point.



Much earlier, soon after   :  

you and I both heard Mr. Ratchett



ring his bell several times and then

apologize for having had a nightmare.



Ce n'est rien.

C'était un cauchemar.



Who rang the second bell while

you were answering Mr. Ratchett's?



The Princess Dragomiroff, monsieur.



She asked me to summon her maid.



Thank you, Pierre.

That is all for the moment.



He had the means to do it.

The passkey to Ratchett's room.



- And a knife borrowed from the chef.

- With whom he was in league.



Which he plunged repeatedly

and without motive into the body



of his suitably astonished victim.



Anyway, we know the door

was not only locked, but chained.



Mr. McQueen.



Since our last conversation,



I have learned the true identity

of your late employer.



You don't say.



Ratchett was, as you yourself

suspected, merely an alias.



He was, in fact, Cassetti.



The gangster who masterminded

the kidnapping and killing



of little Daisy Armstrong.



You had no idea of this?



Oh, no, sir.



If I had, I'd have cut off my right hand

so I couldn't type his lousy letters.



And I'd have killed him with my left.



You feel you could've done

the good deed yourself?



It seems like I'm kind of

incriminating myself.



I should be more inclined

to suspect you, Mr. McQueen,



if you displayed an inordinate sorrow

at your employer's decease.






My dad, my father,

was the district attorney, yeah,



who handled the Armstrong case.



Mrs. Armstrong and her husband

came to our house twice



for advice about the ransom money.



She was gentle and frightened.



But not too frightened to take

an interest in a young man



who wanted to go on the stage.



She even said she'd write to...



She died before

she got around to that.



She was as helpful

to me as a...



Well, a mother.



Forgive a Freudian question.



- Do you love your mother?

- I did.



She died when I was  .

An impressionable age.



- Why do you ask?

- We shared a compartment



on the first night of our journey.



You cried out to your mother

twice in your sleep.



Did I?



I still dream about her.



Go on. Tell me.

I'm emotionally retarded.



Tell me that's why

I never married.



I am not here to tell you anything,

Mr. McQueen. You are here to tell me.



Yeah, I'm sorry.

Yeah, there's just one thing.



How did you...



...figure out Ratchett's identity?



By a message found

in his compartment.



He'd have burnt that, though,

as I told you.



He did.



Yeah, he did.



- Then how did you decipher...?

- With the help of a hatbox.



Thank you, Mr. McQueen.



He did it.

He murdered Cassetti.



He practically confessed as much.



No, the psychology is wrong.



A sensitive, motherless boy

conceives a passion for a lady



whom he admires above all

for her gentleness.



Now, could McQueen,

admiring the gentleness,



commit so foul a murder

without betraying the gentleness



of what we might call

his fairy godmother?






Now you have accidentally

said something valuable.






Mr. Beddoes, this is not

an inquisition, only an inquiry.



When you took Mr. Ratchett

his valerian drops



about  :   yesterday evening,

was he already in bed?



That is so, sir. Mr. Ratchett

always retired early on trains.



What were your duties before

leaving him for the night?



To place the valerian drops

within reach, sir.



- Beddoes.

- Sir?



Did you put this on my table

during dinner?



- No, sir.

- Then who the hell did?



I have no idea, sir.



May I ask what it is?



What it is, is none

of your damn business.



I wanna know how it got here.



- Will there be anything more, sir?

- There will.



Tell Mr. McQueen

I wanna see him, now.



Very well, sir.



At what time would you like

to be called in the morning, sir?



Not before   .



Very good, sir.



- Was that usual?

- Oh, quite, sir, yes.



His breakfast was his amber moon.



He never rose

until it had had its full effect.



So you instructed Mr. McQueen



and then returned

to your own compartment,



the number one and two,



whose upper berth was occupied

by Signor Foscarelli.



Oh, yes, sir, the Italian person.



- Does he speak English?

- A kind of English, sir.



I think he learned it

in a place called Chicago.



Did you talk together much?



Oh, no, sir. I prefer to read.



Hey, what are you reading,

Mr. Beddoes?



Love's Captive,

by Mrs. Arabella Richardson.



Is it about sex?



No, it's about   :   Mr. Foscarelli.



I like that.

"It's about   :  ."



- And after that you went to sleep.

- Oh, no, sir.



Not until   in the morning.

Unfortunately, I had the toothache.



- And your companion?

- He snored incessantly.



- And your companion?

- He snored incessantly.



One final point. How did you come

to be employed by Mr. Ratchett?



Through Maibaums, sir,

the big agency in New York.



You'll find me on their books.



And before then?



I was in the army, sir,

as a private soldier.



- Where?

- Troon, sir.



- In the Far East?

- Oh, no, sir, in Scotland.



Oh, Scotland.



Oh, forgive me.

I am only an ignorant Belgian.



Oh, a Belgian, sir?

I always thought you were French.






Did you know that Mr. Ratchett

was of Italian extraction?



So that accounts for his hot temper.



His real name was Cassetti.



The name means nothing to you?



Do you remember

the Armstrong case?



No, sir. Oh, yes, yes.



The little girl.



Cassetti was responsible

for her murder.



- How does that strike you?

- I have often thought, sir,



that instead of our employers

requiring references from us,



we should require

references from them.



Thank you, Mr. Beddoes.



Oh, please don't get up, sir.

Will there be anything else?



No, that is all.



He did it. The butler did it.



He had constant access

to Ratchett.



He himself could have

poisoned the valerian



before bringing it to his master.



As for the psychological,



well, who knows what boils

and bubbles beneath that stiff shirt



to which his profession

has called him.



Did he not read Love's Captive?



At a time when you suggest he should

have been stabbing Mr. Ratchett?



I fear that help is at hand.



Even if it is only a working party

with picks and shovels,



we must make haste to complete

this inquiry before we reach Brod.



If it is an engine with a snowplow,

our troubles will really begin.



- Who's next?

- Mrs. Hubbard.



Oh, my God.



The whistle means

that help is near, madame.



- And high time too.

- Time is what counts, Mrs. Hubbard,



if we are to complete this inquiry

before reaching Brod.



I will therefore make my questions



as brief as I hope you will make

your answers,



and the more often

you can confine yourself



to a simple yes or no, the better.



Well, don't waste time

yammering, begin.



Your full name

is Harriet Belinda Hubbard?



Yes. I was called Harriet after my...



By now, Mr. McQueen

has doubtless informed you



- of the true identity of Mr. Ratchett?

- Yes, that low-down, stinking...



Were you acquainted

with the Armstrongs?



No, of course not. They were

a very social family. Anyway...



Mrs. Hubbard, I overhead the whole

of your conversation with Pierre



about there being a man

in your room soon after  :  



on the night of the murder.

Tell me one thing more.



Wasn't the door locked

on your side of the door



that communicated with Mr. Ratchett's

compartment when you went to bed?



Yes, so far as I know.

My second husband...



What do you mean,

as far as you know?



Could you not see

the bolt from the bed?



- No.

- Why?



It was masked by my makeup bag

on the hook above.



Pierre checked the bolt

after I rang my bell



and told him there had been a man

hiding in my compartment.



Yes, yes, we know all about that.



Oh, no, you don't.



I beg your pardon.



You don't know what I found this

morning on top of the magazine



I'd been reading to send myself asleep.






Dio mio.



This is a button from the tunic

of a wagon-lit conductor.



Doctor, would you kindly inquire

whether Pierre has lost a tunic button?






Your handkerchief, Mrs. Hubbard.



Oh, that's not mine.

I have mine right here.



Oh, I thought the initial H...



H for Harriet, H for Hubbard,

but it's still not mine.



Mine are sensible things,

not expensive Paris frills.



What good's a hankie like that

to anybody?



One sneeze and it has to go

to the laundry.



Oh, Mrs. Hubbard,



you have afforded me a great deal

of help in this difficult case.



Thank you, if I may so express it,

for playing your part.



If you need me again, I'll be around.



Not one of Pierre's buttons

is missing,



and all his buttons are sewn on

with old thread.



As I suspected.



- I'm fright.

- Have no fear, mademoiselle.



They all come out looking

much more peaceful.



Only God can give peaceful.



- God dag, fröken Ohlsson.

- Nej, talar ni svenska.



Alas, mademoiselle,

that is the extent of my Swedish.



Forgive me if I am personal,



but most Scandinavians

of my acquaintance



are well-educated

in other languages.



And yet you have difficulty...



I... I was born backwards.



That is why I work in Africa

as missionary,



teaching little brown babies

more backward than myself.



But I... I see that you have spent

three months in America.



Were you not able to improve?



I was in... In a mis...

I... I... International group.



In... For getting money for

African mission from American rich.



I... I speak Swedish

to big audiences



in... In...

In Swedish-American institution



in Minneapolis and other big cities.



In ten weeks,



we make $      and...

And    cents.



That's wonderful, wonderful.



Miss Ohlsson, how long have you

been interested in religion?



From five years.



In summer, in...

I had been sick as always.



And I sat in the grass in the garden.



And I... I saw Jesus in the sky,



mit many little children,



but all the children were brown.



So it was a sign for me



- to look after little brown babies.

- Yes.



Were your parents religious?



Ne, they had no respect for God.






So it was not just a sign,



it was also a punishment.



Oh, there, there, there, there.



I'm sure that God will forgive you,

Miss Ohlsson,



and perhaps, which is more important,

so will your father and mother.





            is the compartment

you share with...



Ja, and here is

my number seven bed.



Yes, your number seven.



Tell me about number eight.



Is filled with Miss Debenham,



a very nice young lady from Baghdad,



where she teach English shorthand

to children,



to forward children.



After the train left Vinkovci,

did she leave her berth?



Ne, she sleep just like me.



If you were fast asleep, how could

you be so sure she did not leave?



In Shimoga Mission,

I can hear snake breathe.



I would know.



Good. And did you leave your room?



Ne, not till morning, in my bed gown.



Is your bed gown white

with red animals?



Ne, is Jaeger.



And Miss Debenham's bed gown?



Den var em lila.



- Oh, like the French "lilas", "lilac".

- Ja.



- Just det lila, just det lila.

- Lila, lila.



Good. And why are you making

this trip, Miss Ohlsson?



Just as always, money,

money for mission.



Good. Good.



When this is all over, mademoiselle,



I promise that I shall make you

an emolument.



God will find you a reward.



Tack så mycket. Tack. Tack.



Monsieur, she did it.



Merci, Pierre, and could you please

inform the Princess Dragomiroff



that Signor Bianchi and I will attend

on her and her maid



- shortly in her compartment?

- Oui, monsieur.



That is very proper.



Monsieur le Comte, this is

a Hungarian diplomatic passport.



It gives you and your wife

the right to refuse interrogation.



In the circumstances,

we waive that right.



You are most kind.



As you know,

Madame la Comtesse,



it is a joint passport which sets out

your husband's name and titles,



but requires no particulars

about yourself,



except your signature

and your maiden name.



Your maiden name

is clearly Grunwald.



That is correct, monsieur.

My family is of German extraction,



though I now hold

Hungarian citizenship.



Unfortunately, the first letter

of your married signature



has been almost obliterated

by a grease spot.



I must say, I find immigration officials

are often less than cleanly. They...



They sit in their little box,

eating a buttered roll with one hand



and stamping the spilt butter

into your passport with the other.



Precisely. Therefore,

I would be greatly obliged



if you could duplicate

the mutilated entry of your passport






Elena Andrenyi née Grunwald.



Allowing for the difference in pens,

the duplication seems exact.



There would be little point, then,

in asking



whether this handkerchief is yours?



Since it contains neither of my initials,

no point whatsoever, monsieur.



And even less point in asking

the color of your dressing gown?



None, unless monsieur takes

a professional interest in apricot silk?



I take a professional interest

in crime, madame.



Have you and your husband

ever visited America together?



No. We first met in Wiesbaden...



...much later.

- Later than what?



Later than the days of my youth,

when I was on post in Washington.



You lived in Washington?



Oh, what diplomat of promise has not?



You did not sleep well last night?



On the contrary, apart from one of

Mrs. Hubbard's customary outbursts,



I slept very soundly.



- And you, madame?

- Oh, even more soundly.



We, neither of us, woke till after  .



As is my custom on night trains,

I took Trional.






One dilutes the white crystals

with water, it is a strong hypnotic.



He makes it sound like a poison.



As with most sleeping drafts,

if taken in sufficient quantities,



it is a poison.



- You are not accusing...

- You are not accused,



you are excused.



Thank you both for your help

and cooperation.



"Kennst du das Land,

wo die Zitronen blühen?



"Lm dunklen Laub

die Gold-Orangen glühen,



"Ein sanfter Wind

vom Blauen Himmel weht,



"Die Myrte still

und hoch der Lorbeer steht



"Kennst du es wohl?"



Why have you stopped reading?



"Dahin! Dahin!

Möcht ich mit dir, o mein Gelieb... "



- Altezza.

- Signor Bianchi.



È permesso presentare

I'investigatore distinto,



Monsieur Hercule Poirot?



Hildegarde has read me many

of your cases in the newspapers,



but I have had to stop her.



Nowadays, they are the only form

of literature that keeps me awake.



And I need what I defiantly continue

to call my beauty sleep.



- You would care for a little cognac?

- Thank you, no.



Yes, please.



Now, you wish me to confess

to the murder of Mr...?



What's his name?



Au contraire, Madame la Princesse,

it is I who wish to make a confession.



You pay me the compliment

of having read about me,



I return the compliment



by admitting that

I have read about you.






I have been accidentally reminded



that you were the godmother

of Mrs. Armstrong,



who was herself the mother

of the kidnapped child, Daisy.



How did you become Mrs. Armstrong's

godmother, madame?



I was the friend and admirer

of her mother,



the great American actress,

Linda Arden.



Why did you bring these daggers

from the place?



Is that a quotation or a question?



A quotation. I saw her twice

as Lady Macbeth in London.



She was the greatest

tragic actress of her day.



Was? Surely she is still alive,




Alive, but bedridden.



Did she not have a second daughter,

younger than Mrs. Armstrong?



There was,

but I do not recall her name.



When I paid a visit,

she was always away at school.



What became of

the younger daughter?



She married a Turk or some such.

We never spoke of it.



What was Mrs. Armstrong's

maiden name?



Mrs. Armstrong's

maiden name was






May I tax your memory and,

indeed, your patience a little longer?



There are other names

in the Armstrong household



that I cannot recall.

Was there not a secretary?



Of course there was a secretary.



Her name, madame?



Her name.



Oh, my memor...



She was a Miss Freebody.



Was there not a gallant chauffeur?



There was.



I never used him. I had my own.



Surely he was not

the only male servant?



I seem to remember one other there.



He was, I think you would say,



the colonel's Indian orderly.



And Mrs. Armstrong's

personal maid.



The one who was wrongly suspected

of complicity in the kidnapping



- and killed herself?

- I always travel



with my own personal maid.



There was no need to speak

with Mrs. Armstrong's.



Doubtless, Fräulein Schmidt

will remember her name.



Surely, Fräulein,

as one lady's maid to another,



you conversed

as equals below stairs.



Ja, ja, natürlich.



But ladies' maids were often called

only by their Christian names.



And what was hers?









You will be so kind

as to give me two aspirin.



And you will ask

the dining-car attendant



to bring me a glass of Russian tea,



and then you may retire

to your own compartment.



I will ring when I need you.



Ja wohl, meine Prinzessin.



Finally, there was the nurse.



I had no need



of a nurse.



That is an ordeal still to come.



You never smile,

Madame la Princesse.



My doctor has advised



against it.



Excuse me.



There is no need for us

to fatigue you further.



You have been of the utmost help.



Go back to the Pullman

and tell Pierre



to summon Colonel Arbuthnott

in five minutes.



- I want a word with the maid.

- Yes, Poirot.



Fräulein Schmidt, I wonder

if I might have a word with you



about a small matter

in the privacy of your compartment?



- I have to take these aspirins...

- We will leave the door ajar.



I observed how moved you were



at the mention

of Mrs. Armstrong's maid, Paulette.



She had a sweet nature, mein Herr.

We were deep friends.



Have you a photograph of her

in your possession?



Ja. I never travel without my photo box.

It helps to pass the evenings.



No, please, mein Herr.

I am strong.



Be calm.



This could be your salvation



and that of every passenger

in the Calais coach,



including your mistress.



When did you last open the suitcase?



After Belgrade. When Pierre

summoned me to the Prinzessin,



I took out a volume of Goethe, in case

she wished me to read her to sleep.



Too stout for Pierre.



And, yes, there is a button missing

from the tunic.



A button found by Mrs. Hubbard.



And a passkey in the trouser pocket.



Here is the photo, mein Herr.



And this pretty, innocent girl



threw herself from a window.



Use this, Fräulein.



I found it in the corridor

and thought it must be yours



- because it bears the initial H.

- No. No.



That is the handkerchief

not of a maid, but of a great lady.



Like your mistress?



It is her style, ja,

but not her handkerchief.



I know all her linen.






the initial is wrong.



What is the princess's first name?



Natalia, mein Herr.

It is a Russian name.



Then I must keep it

until I find the rightful owner.



Might I also keep the photograph until

this evening? I promise to return it.



Ja. Ja. That does not worry me,

but this,



this does.



Am I to be accused

of hiding it in my suitcase?



Fräulein, I am as sure

you did not hide the uniform



as I am sure you are a good

and loyal friend to your mistress.



Not only a good maid,

but also a good cook.



Not merely a good cook,

but a companion, a comfort, a solace.



You see? You are a good cook,

are you not?



All my ladies have said so. I...



Auf Wiedersehen.



Animal crackers in my soup



Lions and tigers loop-the-loop



You opening a dress shop?






We are closing an inquiry.

Where is Shimoga?



- I beg your pardon?

- Shimoga, where is it?



Well, it's a bit off my track.

I'm a Northwest Frontier man myself.



But Shimoga's down south,

in Mysore. Why?



Does it possess a mission?



How the hell should I know?

India's pustular with missions.



You are returning on leave

from India to England?



- Yes.

- Why overland?



Why not?



Because the sea route

by P and O is more usual.



I chose to come overland

for reasons of my own.



Colonel Arbuthnott,

in a murder inquiry,



no suspect's reasons

are exclusively his own.



I stopped for one night

to see Ur of the Chaldees,



and for three days in Baghdad

with the A.O.C.,



who happens to be

a friend of mine.



The English Miss Debenham

also has traveled from Baghdad.



It is possible the murder

was committed by a woman



or by a man and a woman

in collaboration.



From your acquaintanceship

with Miss Debenham,



would you have thought

that she was



capable physically or emotionally or...?



- That's a bloody irregular question.

- I know, but I ask it.



Miss Debenham is not a woman.



- She's a lady.

- Which precludes her



from being a murderess?



Damn it,

the man was a perfect stranger.



- She'd never seen him before.

- You feel warmly in the matter.



I don't know what you're driving at.



Then let us be practical

and drive at facts.



Did you know Colonel Armstrong?



Not to speak to.



You see, his outfit and mine

wouldn't have mixed much.



I'm Indian army.

He was British army, serving in India.



Royal Scots.



- How did you know?

- It was in the papers



when he shot himself

after the kidnapping.



Rotten show.



Thought he'd been tougher than that.



After all, he got a D.S.O.

And an M.C. In France.



Distinguished Service Order.



Military Cross.



Mon colonel,



Ratchett was responsible

for five deaths:



The suicide

of the falsely accused maid.



The murder of the Armstrong child.



The death of Mrs. Armstrong,



while giving premature birth

to a stillborn baby.



And the ultimate suicide

of Colonel Armstrong,



in the face of multiple

and intolerable bereavements!



I would have understood his action



if, in addition to the D.S.O. And M.C.,

he had been awarded the V.C.



Which stands, as you may know,

for Victoria Cross



and is awarded for valor.



Then, in my opinion,



Ratchett deserved what he got.



Though I'd sooner have seen him

properly tried by jury.



Trial by    good men and true

is a sound system.



We believe the murder

was committed at  :  .



What were you doing then?



I was yarning with young...

What's his name?



McQueen, in his compartment.



He was interested in the future

of India, a bit impractical.



He thought the British

ought to move out.



How long did you stay yarning

after that?



Till  :  . It's...



It's what I call a three-pipe yarn.



Colonel Arbuthnott, you are the only

passenger in the Calais coach



who smokes a "pipe".



- So it would appear.

- Then this...



...must be your "pipe" cleaner.



- It's the same brand.

- It was found in an ashtray



by the dead man's bedside.



Then someone planted it there.

It's a used "pipe" cleaner.



Or are you suggesting

that I'm fool enough



to have entered Ratchett's cabin,

murdered him,



cleaned my "pipe" and dropped it

in the ashtray before leaving?



No, Colonel Arbuthnott.



Miss Debenham.



- Can I stay?

- No, Colonel Arbuthnott.



Please be seated.



Forgive me, Miss Debenham,

I must be brief.



You met Colonel Arbuthnott and fell

in love with each other in Baghdad.



Why must the English conceal

even their most impeccable emotions?



To answer your observations

in order,



of course, yes, yes,



and I don't know.



Then let me tell you what you do know,

that on the Bosporus Ferryboat



I overheard a part of your conversation

with the colonel.



Not now, not now. When it's all over.

When it's behind us, then.



When what was all over,

Miss Debenham?



And when what was behind you?



Was it some task

that had to be performed?



Some ordeal that

had to be endured?



Some dark deed

that had to be dispatched?



Mr. Poirot, I'm not at liberty

to answer any of those questions.



Not here on this train, perhaps.



But when the Yugoslav police take

over an unsolved murder case at Brod,



you will not remain at liberty

unless you answer the questions.



I can always call my lawyers




This is a private matter

between the colonel and myself.



Miss Debenham, in a murder case,

no matter is private



and evasion breeds suspicion,



so answer my question.

When what was all over?



When what was behind you?

Please answer the question.



You will remain here

until I get an answer from you.



Mon colonel, please, Monsieur Poirot

has expressly forbidden...



Poirot has no right, he's out of order.

This is a private matter.



Je vous en prie, mon colonel.



- Mon colonel.

- Out of my way.



So answer my question.

When what was all over?



When what was behind?

Answer my question.



Get your hands off

Miss Debenham.



I was not aware that I was keeping

my hands on Miss Debenham.



I asked her a simple question



- which she refused to answer.

- So I heard.



Then perhaps you can

answer it for her.



Can you give me your solemn oath,



as a foreigner,



that if the answer

has nothing to do with the murder,



you'll treat it confidentially?



I will.



Six months ago,

before I'd even met Miss Debenham,



- my memsahib...

- Come again?



My wife



expressed herself bored,

not only at living in India,



but at living with me.



And asked me to provide her

with a divorce.



In view of my position, commanding

officer,   th Gurkhas, I refused.



Well, had I not,

I should have lost my command.



My wife returned to England,

where there is irrefutable evidence



that she has been persistently



unfaithful to me.



I have therefore instituted

divorce proceedings



in which she is cited

as the guilty party.



And when those proceedings

are behind us,



when those proceedings

are all over...



...I propose

to marry Miss Debenham.






it is of vital importance,

under English law, that our...






...should not provide evidence

for counter-proceedings



by my wife.



Does that answer your question?





            is certainly an answer.



Doctor, is Pierre

sufficiently recovered?



- Fully.

- May we go?



You may, with my assurance that

our foreigners' lips shall be sealed.



Sorry if I hurt the lad.






They could have done it together. She

has hidden fires. She is very strong.



Why did you not ask her

if she had been to America?



Because I did not need to.



Pierre, le colonel

s'excuse de son geste.



Merci, monsieur.



Signor Foscarelli.



You are a naturalized

American subject?



- You bet.

- For how long?



Seven years. Mi ricordo del

giorno preciso quando...



Faccia di rispondere

alle domande.



Otherwise, he will detain you

longer than you would detain him.



You are a motorcar salesman.



You bet.

American automobiles to Italians.



Did you know Cassetti?



Not on your sweet life.

Era Mafioso.



He says he was Mafia.



- Really?

- Yes.



Who do you...?

Who do you think killed him?



- Un altro Mafioso.

- He says another Mafia.



They are always killing each

other with a knife or with a gun...



Why did you bring

this dagger from the place?



Because I found it

in my makeup bag.



Ecco, what did I say?



Knives or guns. It's a vendetta

between two Mafiosi.



Give me the dagger.



When did you last open

your makeup bag?



Yesterday evening,

when I took everything out.



If you took everything out,

why did you need to reopen it?



Because I was putting

something back in.



You may set your mind at rest,

Mrs. Hubbard.



- The missing button.

- Precisely,



and I can assure you the owner

of the tunic is not now on the train.



Are you going back

to the dining car?



I'll say I am. Do you think

I could face my compartment



so soon after that?



Would you kindly ask

the chief attendant



to arrange the tables and chairs

so that Signor Bianchi,



Dr. Constantine and myself



can confront the passengers

with the solution of the murder?



I... I help with the risoluzione.



Yes, if you will briefly

answer two more questions.






On the night of the murder,



did Mr. Beddoes

leave the compartment?



No. No, he grunt like a pig

with the pain in his teeth.



And have you ever

been in private service?






Thank you. That is all.



- Excuse me, sir.

- Yes.



Enfin, doctor?



This blood is human.



This dagger could,

in two different hands,



have inflicted all of the wounds.



And you know

who inflicted them?



Our last interrogation

will be something of a gamble.



But if it succeeds...



...we'll know.



Come in, come in.

Please be seated.



You are Cyrus B. Hardman,

a theatrical agent.






I mean, I'm...

I'm not a theatrical agent.



That's a phony, issued to me

under license by Pinkerton's.



- The detective agency?

- Stamboul branch.



Ratchett asked them for an

American bodyguard, they sent me.



I... didn't do so hot.



Can you prove this was

the reason for your journey?



- It's Paulette.

- Paulette.



Paulette Michel.



Now I can stop pretending

to be anything.



Ladies and gentlemen,

may I have your attention, please.



May I respectfully suggest

that there should be no talking



while Monsieur Poirot addresses you.

If anyone wishes to make a statement,



he or she can do so

at the meeting's end.



Thank you.



Ladies and gentlemen, you are

all aware that a repulsive murderer



has himself been repulsively

and perhaps deservedly murdered.



How and why?



Here is the simple answer.



There is evidence

supporting the theory



that the murderer

was a stranger to us all.



Mrs. Hubbard was conscious

of a man in her compartment



soon after  :   a.m.



She later found near her bedside

the button of a wagon-lit conductor.



Fräulein Schmidt discovered,

planted in her suitcase,



the uniform of a conductor,



which could not possibly

have fitted Pierre,



and from which, in fact,

there was a button missing.



And in the trouser

pocket of the uniform



was a conductor's passkey.



Later still, Mrs. Hubbard discovered

this bloodstained dagger,



which Dr. Constantine confirms



could have been

the murderer's weapon.



The obvious implication

is that the murderer,



disguised as a conductor,

boarded the train at Belgrade,



made his way by means

of the convenient passkey



to Ratchett's compartment,

stabbed him to death,



planted the dagger

and the uniform,



and then departed, since the train

was now halted in a snowdrift.



Who was he?



I am inclined to agree

with Mr. Foscarelli,



who believes that he was

a rival member of the Mafia,



exacting private vengeance

for a vendetta



whose precise nature the Yugoslav

police will undoubtedly identify.





            that all?

- No. No, no, no, no.


            that all?

- No. No, no, no, no.



No, it is not.



I said, here is the simple answer.



There is also a more...



...complex one.



But remember

my first solution when I...



When you've heard my second.



Let us, for the moment, assume

what is perfectly plausible,



that the mysterious

stranger did not exist.



The murder must then have been

committed by some person or persons



in the Calais coach and therefore

are present in this dining car.



Let us not, for the moment,

ask the question "how"



but the question "why",

which will tell us how.



I was not surprised

that every single one of you



should have heard of

the notorious Armstrong case.



But I confess to a mild surprise when

the first passenger I interrogated,



Mr. McQueen...



...admitted, under emotional stress,



that he had actually known

Mrs. Armstrong, albeit very slightly.



She was gentle and frightened.



But not too frightened to take

an interest in a young man



who wanted to go on the stage.



Was Mr. McQueen lying

when he denied ever having



known that Ratchett

was Cassetti?



Or did he become

Ratchett's secretary



as part of a deliberate plan to avenge

Mrs. Armstrong's death?



Only by interrogating

the other passengers



could I hope to see the light.



But when I began

to question them,



the light, as Macbeth

would have said, thickened.



When I told the Princess

Dragomiroff that I knew she was



Mrs. Armstrong's godmother,



her answers to my subsequent

questions smelled strongly



of inaccuracy and evasion.



Even I knew more from reading

the newspaper reports



than she from her frequent visits.



Was there not a chauffeur?



There was, monsieur, but I had

my own. I never used him.



Evasion. What was the name of

Mrs. Armstrong's personal maid?



I always travel with

my own maid, monsieur.



There was no need to speak

with Mrs. Armstrong's.



Evasion. I asked for particulars

of the manservant.



He was, I think, the colonel's Indian,

how you would say, orderly.






Colonel Armstrong was an officer

of the British army in India.



He would have had a British

batman, like Private Beddoes,



to serve his personal needs.



Only officers of the Indian army,



like Colonel Arbuthnott,

have Indian orderlies.



I asked her the name of

Mrs. Armstrong's younger sister.



I do not recall her name.



Unbelievable evasion.



I asked her the name

of Mrs. Armstrong's secretary.



Yes, a Miss Freebody.



Non, c'est impossible ça.



The princess, it seems,

is playing the psychological game



of word association.



Freebody is the name

of the junior partner



of one of London's most famous

and most opulent ladies' stores



of the sort perhaps patronized

by the princess herself.



The name of the senior partner

is Debenham.



Debenham and Freebody.



Was the princess covering

up for our Miss Debenham,



who taught shorthand

in Baghdad?



Can she tell us the name

of Mrs. Armstrong's younger sister?



Then I will tell you her

Christian and her maiden name.



When I asked the Princess

Dragomiroff if she could tell me



the maiden name of her

goddaughter, Mrs. Armstrong,



she could not possibly,

as a godmother,



plead ignorance of this.

She replied...






Grunwald is the German

for Greenwood.



The princess's hesitation

persuades me



that Grunwald was

the true maiden name



of her goddaughter,

Mrs. Armstrong.



And that the Countess Andrenyi



is Mrs. Armstrong's

surviving younger sister.



Her Christian name is Helena.



Not Elena. No, no, no.



But Helena.



And where did she lose

her Christian name's initial H?



She lost it under a convenient grease

spot in her husband's passport.



And why was the grease

spot purposely applied?



Because she and her

husband were afraid



that this handkerchief,

bearing the initial H...



...might lead me to suspect her

of complicity in the murder.



I swear before God and on my

word of honor as a gentleman,



that this handkerchief

does not belong to my wife.



No, no, no, no, no, no.

Not at...



No. No.

No. No. No.



It does not.



No. Nor does it belong

to Mrs. Harriet Belinda Hubbard.



Nor to Fräulein Hildegarde Schmidt,



whose finest quality is her loyalty.



The initial is wrong.



What is the princess's first name?



Natalia, mein Herr.

It is a Russian name.



In the Russian, or Cyrillic, alphabet,



their capital N



is written like our capital H.



Madame la Princess,



should this costly handkerchief

cease to remain an exhibit,



it will be returned to your

loyal maid for laundering.



Or is Hildegarde Schmidt

really your maid?



I have, perhaps, a nose for the aura

of fine food and laid a trap.



You are a good cook,

are you not?



All my ladies have said so. I...



If you are a lady's maid,



your ladies never have a chance

of discovering if you are a good cook.



As good a cook as

Hildegarde Schmidt must have been



to the Armstrong household.






Who do we now

have here in this car...



...that could have known

or could have been involved



with the Armstrong household?



We have, one, Mr. McQueen,



who became boyishly

devoted to Mrs. Armstrong



at the time of the kidnapping.



Two, the Princess Dragomiroff,



who was Mrs. Armstrong's

devoted godmother.



Three, the Countess Andrenyi,



who was Mrs. Armstrong's

devoted younger sister.



Four, the Count Andrenyi,



who is Helena's devoted husband



and Mrs. Armstrong's

devoted brother-in-law.



Five, Hildegarde Schmidt, who was

Mrs. Armstrong's devoted cook.



Five, Hildegarde Schmidt, who was

Mrs. Armstrong's devoted cook.



Six, Mary Debenham, who was

Mrs. Armstrong's devoted secretary.



Miss Debenham's inclusion

is pure conjecture.



I did not have to ask Miss Debenham



if she had ever lived in America,



because during her

interrogation, she said...



I can always call my lawyers




An Englishwoman who had never

lived in America would have said,



"I can always make a trunk call

to my solicitors."



Tout de même, I must thank

the pipe-smoking Colonel Arbuthnott,



for a remark which finally resolved

all my confusions about this...



This extraordinary case.



I prefer to set aside the fact



that he denied ever having spoken

to Colonel Armstrong in India.



And yet he remembered

in great detail



the decorations which

Colonel Armstrong had won



years earlier in France.



I prefer to remember his views

on the British jury system.



Trial by    good men and true

is a sound system.



The iron tongue of midnight



hath told   .






...the number    began to ring

in my head like a great bell.






Doctor, how many wounds

were there in Ratchett's body?



- Twelve.

- Mr. McQueen,



how many capital letters,

each inscribed by a different hand,



were contained in each

of the two threatening messages



you showed me on Ratchett's

correspondence file?



Twelve. Twelve.



Colonel Arbuthnott,

how many persons in a jury?






Pierre Paul Michel,



how many passengers

in the Calais coach,



excluding myself

and the murdered man?



Twelve, monsieur.



- Show me your wallet.

- No!



Mr. Hardman,

you may not speak.



Ratchett never asked you to be

his bodyguard, he asked me.



And I, perhaps to

my discredit, refused.



Before you joined Pinkerton's

as a private detective,



you were an ordinary policeman,

were you not?



A cop...



...who, as is customary with cops,



fell in love with



a pretty housemaid

on his beat.



Yes, and would have

married her...






Your daughter, Paulette,

never died of scarlet fever, did she?



No, she killed herself



when falsely accused

of complicity



in the kidnapping and killing



of little Daisy Armstrong.






They could not have done it

without you, could they?






The procurer of this disguise for

the mysterious member of the Mafia,



who never existed



any more than the owner

of this kimono existed



as a real character and not as a red

herring to confuse and deceive me.



Although I think

that I was not deceived.



I have, how shall I put it,



an eye for the...



For the figure

of a receding woman.



Countess, your cosmopolitan accent



showed an inherited ability...



...from your actress mother.



But God knows

from what implausible source



Miss Greta Ohlsson...



...learned her English vocabulary,

too ludicrous to be credited.



I was born backwards.



That is why I work in Africa

as missionary,



teaching little brown babies

more backwards than myself.



You coined words like "bed gown",



and yet you understand

words like "emolument".



I truly believe you did look after

little brown babies at your mission



in Shimoga, which is in India,

by the way, you know.



It's not Africa.



But I believe you

were covering up



for once, years earlier,

when you were in America,



having looked after a little

white baby called Daisy...



...whose death, though you

could do nothing to prevent it,



so preyed on your mind that you

sought refuge in a vision of Jesus.



And your future as a missionary,



looking after little brown babies,

was sealed.



You. You were lucky



only to be bound and gagged,



not crushed like the manservant.



- Mr. Beddoes.

- Sir.



You served with the

British army in Scotland.



Colonel Armstrong

was in the Royal Scots.



Would you kindly give Dr. Constantine

your deepest butler's bow?



Yes, there is an old contusion.



The result of a slight fracas

in the mess, sir,



with regard to the quality of a pudding

known as spotted dick.



Thank you, but I think

you've been spotted too.



Mr. Foscarelli is very knowledgeable

about automobiles.



I suspected that perhaps he had

once been Armstrong's chauffeur.



I asked if he had ever

been in private service.






I think Mr. Foscarelli's

appalling English is more genuine



than Miss Ohlsson's,

but I think he meant yes.



- Think, monsieur?

- Think, think. Yes, think!



What else can be done on a train

isolated by a snowdrift?



If all these people are not

implicated in the crime,



then why have they all told me,

under interrogation,



stupid and often unnecessary lies?



Why? Why? Why? Why?



Doubtless, Monsieur Poirot,

because they did not expect you



to be on the train. They had no

time to concert their cover story.



I was hoping someone

other than myself would say that.



Ladies and gentlemen,



we now come

to my own reconstruction



of the night of the murder...



...or the night of the red herrings.



I only wish...



I only wish I could describe it...



...with the incomparable panache...



...the consummate verve,



the enthralling cadences,

the delicate gestures,



the evocative expressions of

America's greatest tragic actress,



Harriet Belinda.



Miss Linda Arden.



I've always heard she wanted

to play comedy parts,



but her husband

wouldn't have it.



Which husband?

Your second husband, Mr. Hubbard?



Which husband?

Your second husband, Mr. Hubbard?



Or your first husband,



Mr. Grunwald?



Linda Arden, the actress,

never played as difficult a role



as Mrs. Hubbard, the organizer

of this extraordinary revenge.



Dare I deduce that the great

Linda Arden has been cured



of her incurable disease

and is no longer bedridden?



It is I who should be committed

to a bed in a mental home.



It is I who need a cure

for being so slow



to notice the tricks

that were being played on me



with regard to the time

of the murder.



- Will there be anything more, sir?

- There will.



Tell Mr. McQueen

I wanna see him, now.



Very good, sir.



"And six beakers, stop.



"Only five, repeat,

five beakers were delivered.



"One, repeat, one badly chipped,



"which will be returned

on receipt of replacement



"to my Paris address.



"Signed, Ratchett."



OK, Hector, that's all.



Good night, Mr. Ratchett.



Good night, Hector.



Ce n'est rien.



C'etait un cauchemar.



Bien, Mr. Ratchett.



May you now have

pleasant dreams.



At  :   came Mrs. Hubbard's




that there was

a man in her room,



who had, for reasons which I dare

not even guess, shed a button.



The next morning,

the murder was discovered.



Dr. Constantine sets

the time of the murder



anywhere between

midnight and   a.m.



Now, I came to various conclusions.



The clumsy cliché

of the smashed watch



registering  :  



had been done deliberately

to excite my disbelief.



And since Mr. McQueen

had overemphatically said



that Ratchett spoke

no languages,



I was being deliberately

maneuvered into believing



that Ratchett was already dead



when a voice cried out

from his room in French.



In other words,



I was being forced

into the theory



that the murder was

committed before  :  .



A period for which every single

one of you had an unshakable alibi.






...supposing that the crime

had not been committed earlier,



but later than  :  ...



...when all the noises and incidents



designed to confuse me

had died down.



And I had lapsed into sleep



because the train was now silent...



...and at peace.



Silent, yes.



At peace, no.



By  :   the murder was afoot.



Envisage it.



For my daughter.



My granddaughter.



In memory of Colonel Armstrong...



...a great soldier



and an even greater friend.



And for Mrs. Armstrong.



They took me into their home

and their hearts.



For their Daisy and mine.



Oh, God, forgive me.



For my...

My sister and my...









For the grief you brought

to my beloved wife.









For my beloved goddaughter.



For Mother Armstrong...



...from Hector.



For my gentleman.



To Paulette,



with love.



And with mine,



God rest the soul



of my dear, dead daughter.



I repeat...



...a repulsive murderer



has himself



been repulsively and, perhaps,



deservedly murdered.



But in which of the two ways

that I have suggested?



In the simpler way,

by the Mafioso



disguised as

a wagon-lit conductor?



Or in the more complex way

that I have just outlined...



...which involves many questions

and, of course...



...considerable scandal?



Signor Bianchi, it is for you,

as a director of the line,



to choose the solution that we shall

offer to the police at Brod.



Though I confess...



...I am in two minds.



Though I...



I think the police at Brod

would prefer



the simplicity of the first solution.



We have the uniform...


            show the police.



If we have the uniform,



there must have

been a man in it.



So therefore,



I elect the first solution.



Here, here.






I thank you.



My friend.



Now I must go and wrestle

with my report to the police



and with my conscience.





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