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Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace
Shdnpos.jpg
Original French film poster
Directed by Terence Fisher
Frank Winterstein
Produced by Artur Brauner
Wolf Brauner
Written by A. Conan Doyle (novel)
Curt Siodmak
Starring Christopher Lee
Thorley Walters
Music by Martin Slavin
Cinematography Richard Angst
Distributed by Constantin Film
Release date(s) 1962
Running time 87 min.
Country Germany / France / Italy
Language German

Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace (German: Sherlock Holmes und das Halsband des Todes) is a 1962 black-and-white film directed by Terence Fisher and Frank Winterstein. It was a German-French-Italian co-production. It stars Christopher Lee as Sherlock Holmes and Thorley Walters as Dr. Watson. One-time Universal screenwriter Curt Siodmak (The Wolf Man) wrote the screenplay, based on the characters created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

The film's plot has Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson attempting to recover a stolen necklace, worn by Cleopatra, from Professor Moriarty. Holmes tries to convince the police that the professor is a criminal, but they are disbelieving.

ProductionEdit

The film was intended to be an adaptation of Doyle's final Holmes novel, The Valley of Fear, but only minor elements of this story remained.[1][2] Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace was not released to theatres in England until 1968, and it went directly to television in the United States.[3]

Lee donned a false nose[2] to play the famous detective for the first time. (He later reprised the role on TV, in 1991's Incident at Victoria Falls and 1992's Sherlock Holmes and the Leading Lady). Lee and the rest of the cast were dubbed.[4][2] Although Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace was filmed in English, the audio track was recorded post-production by different actors, mainly American. The film has a jazz score by Martin Slavin.[2]

Thorley Walters again played Dr. Watson in The Best House in London (1969), The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother (1975), and Silver Blaze (1977).

ReactionEdit

Fisher and Lee were not happy with the film. Fisher called it "a film well worth left alone"[5] and Lee said of it, "I think it was a pity, this film, in more ways than one. We should never have made it in Germany with German actors, although we had a British art director and a British director. It was a hodge podge of stories put together by the German producers, who ruined it. My portrayal of Holmes is, I think, one of the best things I've ever done because I tried to play him really as he was written, as a very intolerant, argumentative, difficult man, and I looked extraordinarily like him with the make-up. Everyone who's seen it said I was as like Holmes as any actor they've ever seen both in appearance and interpretation."[6]

The Monthly Film Bulletin said of the film that "apart from some startling anachronisms the period detail was on the whole nicely done",[7] but Marjorie Bilbow of Cinema and T.V. Today said, "As a story woven around an unknown detective it would have been forgiveable, but classic characters demand more accurate handling than this."[8] A more recent review from George R. Reis of DVDdrive-in.com called the film "an enjoyable little mystery" and Lee "a wonderful Holmes."[9]

Charles Prepolec of the Holmes fan website BakerStreetDozen.com wrote, "There are some amusingly broad characters that add an element of humour, including a sadly Nigel Bruce-like performance from Thorley Walters. Comedic turns abound in a pub sequence with Holmes in his thug disguise. There are some well played scenes between Lee and Hans Söhnker, played out on a bench that echo the fantastic exchange between Holmes and Moriarty recorded in The Final Problem. Great stuff, but unfortunately not frequent enough in this film."[10]

Home videoEdit

Retromedia Entertainment released Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace on DVD in 2005. In 2006, Alpha Video released a double feature DVD including Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace and the 1931 film The Speckled Band, starring Raymond Massey.

BibliographyEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit


Th UniversalMonsters This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace.
The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Universal Monsters Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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