Search This Blog

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Hound Of The Baskervilles (1939)

The heir (Richard Greene) of the Baskerville estate in the moors of Devonshire arrives from Canada to take his rightful place as the last of the Baskervilles after the mysterious death of his uncle (Ian Maclaren). A local doctor (Lionel Atwill) asks the renowned detective Sherlock Holmes (Basil Rathbone) to look into the death as he believes it may be the result of a long standing curse. The surprise success of this film (Rathbone doesn't even get top billing) resulted in Rathbone doing 14 Sherlock Holmes movies. After awhile, they got further and further away from the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle novels, often using original scripts and placing Holmes in contemporary settings fighting Nazis! But this first effort stays close to the Conan Doyle source material and remains the benchmark of the Rathbone series. The unobtrusive direction by Sidney Lanfield along with the richly atmospheric art and set direction (lots of fog in those craggy moors) and the sterling performances of Rathbone and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson make this a bona fide treat for mystery lovers. With Wendy Barrie, John Carradine, Mary Gordon, Eily Malyon and Morton Lowry.

No comments:

Post a Comment