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The Hound of the Baskervilles

UK 1988
produced by
June Wyndham-Davies, Michael Cox (executive) for Granada Television/ITV
directed by Brian Mills
starring Jeremy Brett, Edward Hardwicke, Kristoffer Tabori, Alastair Duncan, Ronald Pickup, Rosemary McHale, James Faulkner, Fiona Gillies, Raymond Adamson, Edward Romfourt, Philip Dettmer, Stephen Tomlin, Bernard Horsfall, Don McKillop, William Ilkley, Myrtle Devenish, Elizabeth Spender, Donald Bisset
screenplay by T.R. Bowen, based on the novel by Arthur Conan Doyle, music by Patrick Gowers

TV-special
Sherlock Holmes, Sherlock Holmes (Jeremy Brett), Hound of the Baskervilles

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Up in Dartmoor, Sir Charles Baskerville (Raymond Adamson) has died, apparently from shock after being attacked by a hound that is part of the family curse. So his friend Doctor Mortimer (Alistair Duncan), who has taken the responsibility of seeing Sir Charles's heir Sir Henry Baskerville (Kristoffer Tabori) to his family home, pays a visit to Sherlock Holmes (Jeremy Brett) for advice. Holmes is interested in the case, especially after he learns that one of Baskerville's boots was stolen, but he refuses to immediately get involved himself and instead sends his assistant Watson (Edward Hardwicke) along with Sir Henry for protection.

Watson and Sir Henry soon pick up investigations concerning the strange goings-on in the moor, but first they only track down the homicidal brother of Sir Henry's maid (Rosemary McHale), who is soon killed by a big hound, then Sir Henry falls in love with Beryl (Fiona Gillies), the sister of his neighbour Stapleton (James Faulkner), who is a bit too protective about his sister.

Eventually, Holmes does show up, and it turns out he has hidden out in the moor all these days to look over Watson and Sir Henry, and Holmes is quick to pinpoint Stapleton as the murderer, as he is a distant relative of the Baskervilles after Sir Henry's inheritance, but once he has revealed that to Watson, he decides to go back to London instead of guarding Sir Henry, just on the day when Sir Henry is supposed to dine at Stapleton's with him and his sister, who's actually his wife ...

On his way home, after dinner at the Stapletons, Sir Henry is attacked by the hound, but of course Holmes and Watson's departure was only a pretense, and they save him, then save his wife from his violent clutches, as she had long opposed his ways and fallen in love with Sir Henry. Stapleton in the meantime dies in the moor, rather unspectacularly.

 

Asm adaptations of Hound of the Baskervilles go, this one is ok, but not great: Problem is, it gives away it's villain way too soon, features almost no red herrings to draw suspicion from Stapleton, and simply lacks tension for a long stretch in the middle of the movie. On  top of that, the horror atmosphere the source material is strongly suggesting is sadly missing here.

All that said though, the film isn't at all a disaster, the castmembers all give fine performances and some beautiful shots of the moors are caught on camera - you just don't get drawn into the story enough to really care, actually.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD