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Sherlock Holmes Adv of

Basil Rathbone , Nigel Bruce , Alfred L. Werker    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 29.99
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Sherlock Holmes Adv of + Sherlock Holmes:Hounds/Baskerv
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great transfer for good film July 18 2004
By A Customer
Format:DVD
Most people either love or hate the Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce series of Sherlock Holmes adventures. Critics always point out that the films bear little resemblance to Doyle's original stories, and this is true of the 12 "modernized" movies that Universal made between 1942-46. But the two 20th Century Fox movies (this one and Hound of the Baskervilles) are different. They were quality productions set during the Victorian era and, even when they altered characters or plots, remained true to the flavor of Doyle's creations. Best of all, Bruce's Watson was not the buffoon that he later became in the Universal pictures.
In my opinion, however, most objections are now irrelevant, thanks to the excellent and faithful adaptations that Britain's Granada television made with Jeremy Brett as Holmes. We can finally approach the Rathbone-Bruce films as typical Hollywood literary adaptations of their era, and The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is grand entertainment. The atmospheric photography, the eye for period detail, and the charming performances are things that film lovers should not deprive themselves of simply because of the film's lack of faithfulness to Doyle's stories. (Critics should keep in mind that Doyle licensed out his characters to other writers -- and even incorporated their inventions into his own stories!) I won't give away the plot, but suffice it to say that Adventures is one of the best of the Rathbone-Bruce series. (I also like Fox's Hound and Universal's Scarlet Claw.)
MPI has really surprised me with the quality of this transfer. Up until now, they've specialized in documentaries and TV shows, so their work here is very promising. (They own distribution rights to Beckett, and I'd love to see them transfer that to DVD.
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5.0 out of 5 stars a classic July 4 2004
By A Customer
Format:DVD
As a child, my winter Saturday afternoons would not be complete without an old black-and-white murder mystery on TV. Sherlock Holmes, Charlie Chan, what a treasure trove to have them all coming back out on DVD, as clear as they were when the original audiences fell in love with them in the 30's and 40's. Bruce's Watson is overplayed for today's sophisticated audience, but like the memory of a loveable grandfather I find myself enjoying him all over again. Those too young to know, who are used to explosions and gore, find it difficult perhaps to understand this 'kinder, gentler' era of detective story. And Hollywood did take a lot of latitude with this series, especially when they 'updated' Holmes to the 40's. So this one (and Hound) - which remains in the original Victorian era - remains the best of them: a damsel in distress, a 'creepy' funeral dirge, a family curse, the jewels in the tower of London, Moriarity and his orchids, and Rathbone singing and dancing a music hall number. What more do you want for fifteen dollars?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Elementary June 9 2004
Format:DVD
Many actors have tried, but none has surpassed Basil Rathbone's embodiment of Sherlock Holmes. The razor-sharp profile, hawk nose and cocaine eyes seem torn straight from the pages of Arthur Conan Doyle. This is, undeniably, one of the great pairings of actor and character in film history.
Odd to think, then, that the first Holmes film with Rathbone and his faithful Dr. Watson, Nigel Bruce, gave neither man starring credit. That honor on "The Hound of the Baskervilles" went to the romantic leading man, Richard Greene.
The lapse in logic was quickly corrected, with Rathbone and Bruce going on to top-bill 13 famed Holmes movies from 1939-46.
The UCLA Film and TV Archive has rescued the films from public domain hell, in a restoration that aims to return them to 35mm theatrical condition using original elements and acetate copies. The results as seen on MPI's DVDs are indeed impressive, with shadows and light elegant and edgy. Wear is within reason, and the audio suffices.
Film historians' commentaries have been added to some of the feature films, explaining, for instance, just how the 19th century detectives ended up battling Nazis in WWII.
The MPI collection -- whose titles are available separately and in sets -- started rolling out in the fall. The series concludes at the beginning, with "Baskervilles" and "Adventures," both made by Fox before Universal took over and "modernized" the Doyle stories. The Uni films have their moments -- "Woman in Green," for example, is grand and grisly entertainment -- but there's no topping these initial releases, set in Victorian times.
"Adventures," the second Fox film, immortalized the line "Elementary, my dear Watson" -- catchy, but never from Doyle's pen.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Basil Rathbone returns as the Great Detective March 17 2004
Format:DVD
Released in September 1939, "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" is 20th Century Fox's near perfect follow-up to "The Hound of the Baskervilles" from the same triumphant year. Though the credits acknowledge William Gillette's famous play as the source, the story pitting Holmes and Dr. Watson against arch-fiend Professor Moriarty is wholly original.
What makes the film so memorable, aside from its successful recreation of the gaslight ambiance of London's Victorian Era, is the perfection of Basil Rathbone in his second go-round as the Great Detective. Rathbone even performs a song and dance (in disguise) in this adventure, and gets to keep company (platonically, of course) with the beautiful Ida Lupino.
Mary Gordon is on hand as Mrs. Hudson, a role she would reprise in all 12 of the Universal films to come, and Nigel Bruce, though not true to Conan Doyle's vision, is a delightful Dr. Watson. And few actors were better equipped to play Moriatry than the devilish George Zucco who would match wits with Holmes again (though not as the diabolical professor) in Universal's "Sherlock Holmes in Washington."
If "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" is not quite as impressive as the preceding "Hound," it is faster paced and generally more entertaining. A good show all-around.
Brian W. Fairbanks
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Adventures of the mind
There have been only two long-running Sherlock Holmes actors who were really memorable: Jeremy Brett, and Basil Rathbone. Read more
Published on May 16 2010 by E. A Solinas
5.0 out of 5 stars For fans of Holmes, a must see
Who wouldn't want to share the adventures of Mr. Sherlock Holmes? To live in fog-bound, gas-lit, Victorian London? Read more
Published on June 29 2004 by C. Ford
1.0 out of 5 stars I Couldn't give it Half a star, so I gave it 1
I would have only given this movie half a star if I could, and that is because I can use the DVD case for my other CDs. Read more
Published on June 17 2004 by Poya Haghnegahdar
5.0 out of 5 stars Holmes and Watson are Timeless
Many feel this is the best of the series although for creepy atmosphere and unusual plot, I might vote for The Scarlet Claw. Read more
Published on May 31 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Holmes and Watson are Wonderful
Arguably the best of the series, although for sheer mystery and general creepiness I am partial to the Scarlet Claw. Read more
Published on May 31 2004 by Bob C
5.0 out of 5 stars Basil Rathbone rules !!
This is the best of the best. If you are a Sherlock Holmes fan and don't own this dvd what are you waiting for !! Read more
Published on May 31 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Film - Awful Subtitles
Whoever wrote the subtitles for the DVD release of these Basil Rathbone - Sherlock Holmes films should be drawn and quartered. Read more
Published on May 8 2004 by Richard A. Nathan
5.0 out of 5 stars The Sherlock Holmes MPI Series
For those that want the ultimate copies of the Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce films, buy the MPI Series.
The picture and sound is perfect! Read more
Published on April 29 2004 by Hal Annapolis
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