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The Speckled Band (1931)

Unrated | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 7 August 1931 (Ireland)
After her sister dies under mysterious circumstances, a young heiress seeks Holmes' help when she feels threatened by her brutish stepfather.

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(story "The Adventure of the Speckled Band") (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), (adaptation)
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Cast

Cast overview:
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Sherlock Holmes
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Nancy Price ...
Athole Stewart ...
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Storyline

Violet Stoner dies under mysterious circumstances in her bedroom at the gloomy mansion of her brutish stepfather, Dr. Grimesby Rylott. Because Violet had become engaged to be married, she stood to inherit a substantial annual allowance from her parents' estate but never survived to collect it. Her last words were "The Speckled Band!" Now, her sister Helen has become engaged, and the mercenary doctor views the event as money out of his pocket as she stands to get a yearly stipend too. When he orders her to start sleeping in her sister's bedroom, and she finds the bed bolted to the floor, she fears that a fate similar to Violet's will befall her. She turns to the residents of 221B Baker Street for help. Written by Gabe Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

TERRIFIED! Maked for Death by the Words That Sealed Her Marriage! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

7 August 1931 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

A Tira Salpicada  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »

Quotes

Sherlock Holmes: From your clothes I would deduce - you're going to a wedding.
Dr. John Watson: [laughs heartily] At last I've got you. For once in your life you're wromg.
Sherlock Holmes: Wrong?
Dr. John Watson: I'm not going to a wedding! I'm coming from one!
Dr. John Watson: [Watson again enjoys a hearty laugh]
Sherlock Holmes: [sardonically] Give them my congratulations or perhaps condolences.
Dr. John Watson: Rubbish! We all come to it, my dear fellow.
Dr. John Watson: [he laughs again] We all come to it. Goodbye.
Sherlock Holmes: [alone, ironically and sadly, after Watson has left] Not all, my dear Watson... not all.
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Connections

Version of Sherlock Holmes: Das gefleckte Band (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Massey's performance
15 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The only print I've seen of this is pretty badly chopped up. They didn't make much of an effort to preserve these "b-movie" mysteries back then.

The film is directed in much the same manner as Browning directed the Lugosi "Dracula" around the same time - slow, stagy, with emphasis on atmosphere, and with all the young women given over to hysterics.

The film unnecessarily violates the Holmes canon when it shows us the bevy of young starlet secretaries Holmes has hired to aid in his investigations (?!), But most of the story, and its characterizations, are faithful to the original story.

The real surprise here is Raymond Massey - he is an absolute magnificent Holmes, every bit as good as the great Jeremy Brett of the Granada TV series; and, given the stodginess of the rest of the film, I suspect that he essentially directed himself - he moves quickly, easily, and directly, while the rest of the cast stands around waiting for their cues.

I can only recommend this to Holmes completists; but Massey's performance is not to be missed by anyone who admires the master sleuth of Baker Street.


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