‘A Haunting In Venice’ reviews round-up: ‘Branagh’s best Poirot yet’ is a ‘crowd pleaser’

Kenneth Branagh‘s latest Poirot movie is out this week and the reviews are in!

A Haunting in Venice marks Branagh’s third time playing iconic detective Hercule Poirot, with the British filmmaker and actor once again also directing the movie.

Based on on Agatha Christie’s 1969 book Hallowe’en Party, the new supernatural thriller is set in post-World War II on All Hallows’ Eve.

Here’s a sneak peak:

Joining Branagh in the cast this time around are Irish heartthrob Jamie Dornan (50 Shades of Grey) Jude Hill (Belfast), Tina Fey (30 Rock), and Oscar-winner Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once).

“Now retired and living in self-imposed exile in the world’s most glamorous city, Poirot reluctantly attends a séance at a decaying, haunted palazzo,” the official synopsis reveals.

“When one of the guests is murdered, the detective is thrust into a sinister world of shadows and secrets.”

Watch the trailer here:

A Haunting in Venice is released in cinemas on Friday 15 September.

Here we’ve rounded up a spoiler-free selection of reviews to help you decide if you’d like to watch:


“An adult-oriented crowd pleaser of the sort that seldom gets made any longer without superheroes being involved, and better than that, is quite entertaining, A Haunting in Venice extends 2023’s streak as the Year That Hollywood Lured Grown-Ups Back To Theaters.” – Variety


“Branagh’s back to basics chiller is his best Poirot yet … A tight mystery, plenty of twists and a cast having the time of their lives is all Poirot needs to deliver top-drawer thrills – it’s just a shame Branagh didn’t figure this out earlier.” ★★★★ – The Express


“Both the selling-point and the limitation of the Poirot films is that you know exactly what you’re getting … So credit where it’s due to Kenneth Branagh, who has given this a shockingly different feel even while hitting all the necessary beats.” ★★★ – Empire


“Watching A Haunting in Venice is more like chewing on expensive chocolates. An indulgent if disposable treat, it’s just right for Halloween.” – The Evening Standard


“Kenneth Branagh’s Hercule Poirot movies … are never quite as good as you want them to be. But watching them is such a pleasure — the beautiful locations, the A-list casts, the sumptuous period costumes and sets, the horizontal grandeur of Poirot’s mustache — it’s hard to judge them too harshly.” – The Seattle Times


“No amount of spooky jump-scares can save Kenneth Branagh’s latest Christie adaptation, which wastes its atmospheric setting and stellar cast.” ★★ – The Guardian


“In straddling genres, Haunting can get stuck in the middle. But there’s fun to be had there… the dominant images are close-ups of movie stars, including long, lingering glances at Branagh, whose whispery gravitas provides good, if melancholy, company and occasional wit.” – The New York Times


“Michelle Yeoh comfortably steals the show in this starry adaptation of lesser-known mystery The Hallowe’en Party.” ★★★ – The Independent


A Haunting in Venice becomes a classic locked-room mystery, in this case featuring a spooky house; a couple of murders; and lots of bangs, clangs and jump scares, which Branagh heightens through weirdly canted camera angles, image-distorting lenses and a bone-rattling sound design.” – The Washington Post


Take a look at a preview here:

Kenneth Branagh’s Murder on the Orient Express is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video.