Saturday, November 14, 2015

Terror by Night

Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce

Odd that I can find diversion in these old films at a time like this. I suppose it's partly the comfort of familiarity. I don't have to think very hard watching them...just let them wash over me, without emotionally engaging.

This pair are still my favorites although I am dismayed at how stupid they made Watson in these films. My memory of Doyle's stories is that he was a true collaborator...not a bumbling idiot. Ah...hollywood.

The Pearl of Death

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Scarlett Claw

Basil Rathbone

This one was from 1942 - after the rights were taken over by Universal. The look, atmosphere, pace were fine but they made poor Nigel Bruce into a blubbering idiot, presumably to add 'comic relief.' Big mistake. Having Watson act as a true collaborator worked wonderfully. Oh...those Americans.

Still, BR is the best Sherlock ever...he carries the film nicely. A decent, nice-looking entry in the series.


Thursday, November 5, 2015

The Hound of the Baskervilles

Basil Rathbone

Fine treatment of the classic Sherlock Holmes story. The entire thing was preposterous of course but watching the gears turning, the eerie fog on the moors, the hawk-faced, penetrating intelligence of Rathbone, the soft-faced amiability of Nigel Bruce's Dr Watson, the several red herrings thrown in to mislead, even the hatchet-face and perfect diction of John Carradine was a pure, refreshing dip into one of the landmarks of Western popular culture.

I enjoyed this perhaps more than I should have...but I'm allowed.