Bobby Jones (James Warwick) is playing a round of golf on the Welsh coast, and he notices a stranger walking in the same area as him. At first, Bobby and his golf buddy think nothing of it, but soon they discover the stranger has fallen off a cliff and landed on the rocks below. Bobby quickly runs to try and help the strange man, and his friend runs off to seek help. While Bobby is alone with the peculiar man, he finds a photograph of a woman in his pocket and the stranger’s dying words are spoken: “Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?”.
As Bobby gives a statement to the police about the unusual death, he becomes personally quite curious about this man’s death and what his last dying words truly meant. Strange things also begin to happen to and around Bobby- he receives a lucrative job offer which encourages him to leave town, and his beer is spiked. Foul play surrounds Bobby. He begins to question about the murder more and more. Someone is clearly trying to get Bobby to go the opposite direction, but who? And why?
Thankfully, Bobby is not going to solve this mystery all on his own. While travelling on a train, Bobby bumps into Lady Frances Derwent (Francesca Annis), an old friend of his who is quite familiar with what has been happening thanks to the local papers. Lady Frances offers her services to Bobby and becomes entirely invested in the strange occurrences that seem to be going on.
For those who are not aware, this feature is based on a well-known novel written by Agatha Christie. This film is classed as a TV movie, and it certainly feels more like a TV series given the picture quality and 3-hour duration. Being a 1980 film, the aspect ratio here is 4:3 with a 2.0 mono track. Thanks to the great people at Via Vision Entertainment it’s exciting to see this film get a DVD release, but naturally, the age of the film does show with some scenes containing marks on the picture such as dirt or dust. Considering the age of the film, this is to be somewhat expected.
As a plot, this film does not waste any time getting straight into the story. It may sound like a basic murder, but the death is surrounded by many mysteries which got my attention quite quickly. I found myself wanting to press on so I could know the truth and reveals!
The performances are splendid. The chemistry between actors James Warwick & Francesca Annis is easily my favourite element in this film and I feel they are just perfect together. Fun fact- the two actors would later return for another Agatha Christie series and play the famous murder investigators known as Tommy and Tuppence Beresford in Partners in Crime (1983).
Overall, as a TV movie, this is quite a fun murder mystery. The film gets right into the plot and sets up lots of secrets instantly. Once the secrets are all introduced, I found myself entirely invested and eager to know the truth. James Warwick and Francesca Annis are just lovely together on screen, and this element was quickly the best drawcard for this feature. Agatha Christie fans will certainly rejoice at this DVD release thanks to Via Vision Entertainment, who delivers yet another classic to physical media.
Why Didn’t They Ask Evans? (1980) is Now Available on DVD!
PODCASTS ARE NOW AVAILABLE ON APPLE ITUNES & SPOTIFY
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Review Written by Peter Walkden