Friday night, during the film “The Sittaford Mystery”, Jane Marple listened to a young lady explain her fear of a terrible presence she felt in the large, dark house. Miss Marple however, informed her, “The house is only made of brick, stone and mortar. If there is evil here, it’s in someones heart.”
Granted, demonic spirits are very real and they do take hold of people who give over themselves to wickedness. However, I found Miss Marple’s statement against the silly superstition to be quite smart, in that she was pointing out that evil comes from our hearts more often than a bad spirit, which is what the young lady was rather contributing the feeling too.
Miss Marple has said other sharp statements as well.
In one film, “Murder in the Vicarage”, near the climax, the answers to the mystery is finally unscrambled in her mind and she stood in awe at how smart the plan had been of the murderer. She said four simple words, which are still our favorite to quote. “How clever! . . . . How wicked!” She was able to admire the thought which the transgressor had put into their plan but at the same time she was quite disgusted with the wickedness.
She gives two good remarks in “At Bertram’s Hotel” (my review for that one, a favorite of mine, can be read here).
One to the maid Jane, who was disappointed in how she hadn’t been able to clearly solve the case. Miss Marple asked her, “What’s wrong?” and she responded, “I’ll never be as good as you.” Miss Marple smiled, “Get older.” I love this advice, especially in a time where everyone in concerned in staying young. Wisdom comes with age and maturity; so that was wonderful to hear in a movie.
And in the same film, at the climax, the murderer sobbed out, “I did what I did for good reasons!” And Miss Marple fixed her calm gaze on her and said, “You killed two people in cold blood. No, there is nothing good in what you have done at Bertram’s Hotel.” I liked hearing the ‘bad things for good reasons’ argument blown over with firmness.
‘Specially from Miss Marple.