The Hound of the Baskervilles (1983 Britain)

Ian Richardson is a fine Holmes, even if he seems a bit too good-natured. Perhaps this was a throwback to the old Basil Rathbone Holmes persona–and it works in this context. Mr Richardson is hardly the moody Holmes of Arthur Conan Doyle…but he is definitely fun to watch. Unfortunately, Donald Churchill is not one of the great screen Watsons. He is a definite step down from his immediate predecessor, David Healy, who portrayed the good Doctor opposite Richardson in The Sign of Four. As the films were produced in the same year, by the same producer, one must wonder why Healy did not reprise the role for Hound. Instead, we are presented with a rather too blustery Watson, almost reminiscent of Nigel Bruce, though not nearly as appealing. Churchill looks the part, but not much else. [Read more…]

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Incident At Victoria Falls (1992 Europe/International)

incidentIf you didn’t know better, you’d take this for one of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot stories. Just add twenty years and make the hero short and squat instead of so tall and narrow that he seems to be on stilts. Imagine Holmes and Watson in pith helmets and white suits, tramping through the jungle in an exotic location. But really, this TV movie is not to be taken seriously. Its a light-hearted romp with an enjoyable train journey as the highlight. [Read more…]

The Talons Of Weng-Chiang (1977 UK)

d w 2If there is one genre the BBC used to do so well in the 70s it was the costume drama and perhaps this is why this eccentric gem is the peak of classic Dr Who. It is set in the foggy streets of Victorian London where the deerstalker-wearing Fourth Doctor and Leela are searching for the abductor of young women; okay, so far so cliched. What is lurking in the sewers? Well, a very big cuddly rat that screams like a bitch for starters…
[Read more…]

Sherlock Holmes: The Rediscovered Railway Mystery & Other Stories

railwayWritten by John Taylor, a well known writer and radio producer, Dr Watson introduces and recounts four `new’ stories that have up till now remained a mere collection of random notes. The link to the originals is a locked cedar wood chest that Dr Watson discovers in his bureau. Benedict Cumberbatch is the enthusiastic narrator and what a good job he does. [Read more…]

SHERLOCK HOLMES (Granada TV series 1984 – 94)

jeremyBrettJeremy Brett lived and breathed Sherlock Holmes for the decade spanned by the making of these television adaptations of Conan Doyle’s master detective. His highly eccentric (and energetic) characterization is poetry in motion. No one can do the most famous man in fiction better than this. In fact he brings Mr Holmes alive in a way Conan Doyle’s words never did. [Read more…]

ELEMENTARY (USA) Television Review

elementaryThis US update of the Sherlock Holmes saga has only one good thing going for it, it’s star: Johnny Lee Miller. But even his performance is completely drowned out by the politically-correct interpretation, terrible to mediocre co stars and the general lack of quality in pretty much all aspects of the series. [Read more…]

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