Moriarty is sentenced to death, and Sherlock Holmes prepares to retire to the country and marry his girl (sic). But Moriarty has sworn that Holmes, Lt-Col Gore-King of Scotland Yard, and ... See full summary »
Moriarty is sentenced to death, and Sherlock Holmes prepares to retire to the country and marry his girl (sic). But Moriarty has sworn that Holmes, Lt-Col Gore-King of Scotland Yard, and his trial judge shall all be hanged too. When Moriarty escapes and proceeds to put his threat into operation, Holmes has to postpone his retirement. Written by
Kieron O'Hara <email@example.com>
Clive Brook gets his second chance to essay the role of Baker Street's famous sleuth in a film simply entitled Sherlock Holmes. And Reginald Owen who had been Holmes in another film is very briefly seen as Doctor John Watson.
That's because Watson is getting married and as such is now leaving the companionship of Holmes for one who can offer him something Holmes cannot. That's all right because Holmes himself is now keeping company with the lovely Miriam Jordan, daughter of Ivan Simpson one of London's most prominent bankers. Holmes in turn is breaking in a new assistant, the juvenile Howard Leeds.
But before everyone's happily ever after ending is assured the great arch rival of Holmes, Professor Moriarty has escaped from prison and he vows vengeance on three people, Holmes, Alan Mowbray the Scotland Yard inspector who was teamed rather unwillingly with Holmes to bring Moriarty down, and the judge who sentenced him to death. It's the judge who goes first and Brook and Mowbray are in unwilling harness again.
I've never seen a haughtier version of Holmes than Clive Brook in this film. But Brook really typified upper English class haughtiness and seemed always that way on screen. However Moriarty is played by the Scottish actor Ernest Torrence and he's a pretty even match for Brook in terms of intelligence and cunning the way Moriarty has come down to us.
Torrence has brought in professional criminals from other countries including the USA where Chicago hit-man Stanley Fields is trying to set up a protection racket. Fields has a most interesting scene with pub owner Herbert Mundin giving him an offer he can't refuse, but does.
Brook isn't quite up to either Arthur Wontner or Basil Rathbone as Holmes, but the film is all right. I fear Holmes purists will hold out for Jeremy Brett though.
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