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It’s hard to make a good movie about the theatre.

You would think that it would be relatively easy, considering the considerable overlap between the two worlds. It’s all about people coming together to tell a story, right? And yet, films that revolve around the theatrical world rarely seem to fully click. Sure, making the stage-to-screen transition with a script is a long-honored and successful tradition, but successful movies set in the theatre? Those come along much more rarely.

But rarely is not never.

Take “See How They Run,” the new film from Tom George. Written by Mark Chappell, it’s a screwball deconstruction of the time-tested murder mystery genre, bringing together layers and metalayers to mine laughs from one of the theatre’s most beloved traditions – the whodunit.

Packed with winks and nods to those of a theatrical persuasion, “See How They Run” offers a shaggy combination of affection for and skewering of the conventions of the theatre. All of it refracted through a foundational lens of the Grand Dame of mystery herself, Agatha Christie. It’s a murder mystery within a murder mystery within a murder mystery – whodunits all the way down.

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There’s nothing quite like a good whodunit. And the absolute O.G. of the whodunit is Agatha Christie, who wrote scores of novels and short story collections, all devoted to laying out literary mysteries for us to solve … or at least, for us to enjoy being solved.

One of Christie’s iconic characters – Detective Hercule Poirot – is currently in the midst of a big-screen renaissance, courtesy of the efforts of one Sir Kenneth Branagh, who is devoted to bringing the character back into the popular consciousness by working both in front of and behind the camera.

Indeed, “Death on the Nile” marks the second outing for Branagh as both director and star – he plays the iconic Belgian crime-solving genius (mustache and all) even as he steers the ship. It’s not quite as engaging as 2017’s “Murder on the Orient Express,” for a variety of reasons – the level of ensemble talent isn’t quite as high and there’s a pasted-on feel to most of the exterior shots, making the whole thing feel just a touch low-rent – ironic, since this is a story that revolves around the rich.

Even taking those issues into account, however, it is a perfectly pleasant piece of pop cinema, a throwback of sorts (though one could certainly argue that “Death on the Nile” is no less IP-reliant than any superhero movie) that mostly works despite a fair share of flaws.

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