25 June 2005 | The_Void
Another excellent adventure for Sherlock Holmes!
This entry in Universal's awesome and prolific series of Sherlock Holmes films is one of the best that I've seen. The series works because it offers a solid hour (or so) of light entertainment, which it peppers with good humour and an engaging plot; and that is something that is masterfully handled with this movie. The plot of this film is great, and it follows Sherlock Holmes as he makes a rare blunder which leads to a rare and valuable pearl being stolen from a museum. It is then left up to the main man to make up for his mistake as he attempts to search for the lost gem and get to the bottom of the mystery surrounding it's disappearance. This plot makes a great base for a tale about the great detective as it puts him in a position that we don't usually see him in - the man in the wrong. Aside from being amusing, this also gives us the chance to see a different side of Basil Rathbone's portrayal of the great detective. His mannerisms and facial expressions as he realises the trouble that his showboating has brought are priceless, and a highlight of the series on the whole.
Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce make for a great on-screen duo as Sherlock Holmes and his sidekick, Dr Watson and they are joined by the inept police sergeant; Lestrade, and that only increases the comedy element of the movie. The plot line this time doesn't break any new boundaries where mystery plotting is concerned, but it ensures that the film always runs smoothly through it's short running time. It also makes for some great dialogue, and Holmes' speech towards the end is of particular note for being really well done. The atmosphere for this movie is really well done, and as we follow someone that breaks people's backs during the night; this helps the story immensely. My only criticism of this film really is the same one that could be applied to most of the series, and that's that the film is far too short, and we can never really get our teeth into the mystery because the film just isn't on for long enough. However, aside from that this is still a very good Sherlock Holmes adventure and if you've enjoyed other entries in the series, no doubt you'll like this one too.