The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)

Not Rated   |    |  Comedy, Crime, Horror


The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978) Poster

A Sherlock Holmes spoof about a family that has been haunted for years by the curse of a horrible hound.


4.6/10
942

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  • The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)
  • Dudley Moore and Peter Cook in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)
  • Dudley Moore and Peter Cook in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)
  • Joan Greenwood in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)
  • Dana Gillespie and Hugh Griffith in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)
  • Dudley Moore and Peter Cook in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978)

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Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews


26 October 2004 | tomfarrellmedia
The Hound must have worms
British humour has such a rich hierarchy of anarchists, loonies, clowns and mad geniuses that it would be very hard to establish any kind of 'A Division.' But undoubtedly Peter Cook and Dudley would be in there. Their work with Beyond and Fringe and later 'Not Only but Also' and 'Derek and Clive' is unimpeachable and they had impressive solo CVs. But in 1978 some kind of evil curse seemed to be floating about given that this year also saw the release of 'Sergeant Pepper The Movie' Renaldo and Clara AND the 'Star Wars' Thanksgiving Special. Paul Morrisey decided to direct this Holmes and Watson spoof without making up his mind whether it would be sea-side English bawdiness in the Carry On style or Pythonesque anarchism. In the event the movie was neither, simply a burst whoopie cushion where every gag falls flat and a strong cast is completely wasted. Tragically Terry Thomas made his last movie appearance in this stink bomb, while Spike Milligan was only given three minutes. Max Wall, Roy Kinnear and Prunella Scales were hardly allowed rescue the movie while Kenneth Williams was inadvisedly slotted in as Henry Baskerville. Prancing around with his 'startled moose' expression and flared nostrils, this movie buries the myth that he was a great comic actor who was trapped by the mundane Carry On scripts. But it is Dud and Pete who really disappoint, affecting (for no apparent reason) Welsh and Stage Jewish accents with Moore playing Cook's insane mother, a potential comedy winner that instead simply irritates. Elsewhere, Denholm Elliot's urinating dog spraying Moore in the face simply causes the viewer to avert his or her eyes while reheated sketches from their 1960s show (i.e the one legged runner) only underscore the movie's lack of invention. Although Cook had problems with drink and depression by the late 1970s, the duo was also producing the much-praised punk humour of Derek and Clive at the same time. That said, it probably was a factor in their 'divorce' and Moore's flight to New York, Lisa Minelli and 'Arthur.' The look of the movie is cheap and shabby and at least a decade out of date. Moore was a fine pianist but his score is out of place in a comedy. It is wholly appropriate that the final credits end with the unseen audience pelting him with rotten fruit

Critic Reviews



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Did You Know?

Trivia

The 1970s had a cycle of a number of Sherlock Holmes satires and comedies. Titles included The Seven-Per-Cent Solution (1976), The Hound of the Baskervilles (1978), The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother (1975), and The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes (1970). In the 1980s came Without a Clue (1988).


Quotes

Nun: Monsieur le Doctor Watson, what is keeping Monsieur Holmes so long?
Doctor Watson: Oh, reassurez-vous yourselves sisters, your holy relic will be with you momentarily.
Nun: But we have been waiting almost one hour!
Doctor Watson: Mr. Holmes is a very busy man sister. Monsieur Holmes ...


Alternate Versions

The UK R2 DVD contains 2 versions of this film. The original 1978 theatrical print that runs 85 mins and a re-edited re-release print that runs 74m. The major differences are (a) in the theatrical print the opening credits are postioned after the scene with the 3 nuns and roll over various amusing shots of Holmes and Watson in their Baker Street study (Holmes is reading a book by Freud called Guilt without Sex). In the re-edited print, the credits are positioned over the pages of the book after the intro scene with Dudley Moore on the piano. These credits are much abbreviated compared to the theatrical print and run much shorter. (b) When Holmes is first seen in shadow playing the violin the re-edited version then cuts back to Watson with the nuns saying he is Budapest and Holmes appearing behind him. The theatrical print extends the footage of Holmes in shadow so he now gets up, turns a light on, turns off a gramophone player and spits out his coffee before meeting the nuns. (c) the scene in which Watson meets Dr Franklin is much abbreviated in the re-edited version. In this version the scene ends after a brief conversation between the two in front of Franklin's shack. The theatrical print continues on with the scene for several minutes as Watson enters the hut with Franklin, views various stuffed animals' heads, and they have a conversation about why Franklin hated the late Sir Charles - jealously over his mistress. Franklin's mistress then enters the hut, the conversation continues, and then Franklin gets insanely jealous and starts strangling his young mistress as Watson crawls out of the building. The longer theatrical cut makes more sense and is better than the shorter print.


Soundtracks

Twelve String Ties
(uncredited)
Music by John Churston (pseudonym of
H.M. Farrar)
De Wolfe Music Ltd

Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Comedy | Crime | Horror | Mystery

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