MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 5,574 this week

The Sign of Four: Sherlock Holmes' Greatest Case (1932)

Unrated  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery  |  14 August 1932 (USA)
5.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.9/10 from 324 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 5 critic

A young woman turns to Sherlock Holmes for protection when she's menaced by an escaped killer seeking missing treasure. However, when the woman is kidnapped, Holmes and Watson must penetrate the city's criminal underworld to find her.

Director:

Writers:

(novel) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) , (screenplay)
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Family Entertainment Guide

Check out IMDb's comprehensive Family Entertainment Guide for recommendations for movies and TV series for every age and every viewing platform.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 49 titles
created 20 Aug 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 30 May 2012
 
a list of 15 titles
created 24 Feb 2014
 
a list of 479 titles
created 24 Aug 2014
 
a list of 48 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Sign of Four: Sherlock Holmes' Greatest Case (1932)

The Sign of Four: Sherlock Holmes' Greatest Case (1932) on IMDb 5.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Sign of Four: Sherlock Holmes' Greatest Case.

User Polls

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Sherlock Holmes investigates when young women around London turn up murdered, each with a finger severed off. Scotland Yard suspects a madman, but Holmes believes the killings to be part of a diabolical plot.

Director: Roy William Neill
Stars: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Hillary Brooke
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Sherlock Holmes sets out to discover why a trio of murderous villains, including a dangerously attractive female, are desperate to obtain three unassuming and inexpensive little music boxes.

Director: Roy William Neill
Stars: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Patricia Morison
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

When the fabled Star of Rhodesia diamond is stolen on a London to Edinburgh train and the son of its owner is murdered, Sherlock Holmes must discover which of his suspicious fellow passengers is responsible.

Director: Roy William Neill
Stars: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Alan Mowbray
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Lamont Cranston (Rod La Rocque), amateur criminologist and detective, with a daily radio program, sponsored by the Daily Classic newspaper, has developed a friendly feud that sometimes ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Lamont
Stars: Rod La Rocque, Astrid Allwyn, Thomas E. Jackson
Adventure | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Drummond, his girlfriend and his butler try to free an high post of Scotland Yard who has been kidnapped.

Director: Louis King
Stars: John Howard, Heather Angel, H.B. Warner
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

In Paris, a down and out medical student Johann Radek (Franchot Tone) is paid by Bill Kirby (Robert Hutton) to murder his wealthy aunt. A knife grinder (Burgess Meredith) is suspected, but ... See full summary »

Directors: Burgess Meredith, Irving Allen, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Charles Laughton, Franchot Tone, Burgess Meredith
Drama | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In flashback from a 'Rebecca'-style beginning: Ellen Foster, visiting her aunt on the California coast, meets neighbor Jeff Cohalan and his ultramodern clifftop house. Ellen is strongly ... See full summary »

Director: James V. Kern
Stars: Robert Young, Betsy Drake, John Sutton
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Moto thwarts a ruthless band of international agents who try to foment an international incident by mining the entrance to the Suez Canal and blaming the British.

Director: Norman Foster
Stars: Peter Lorre, Ricardo Cortez, Virginia Field
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Nancy Drew, reporter for the school newspaper, clears a girl of murder charges.

Director: William Clemens
Stars: Bonita Granville, John Litel, Frankie Thomas
Quicksand (1950)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

After borrowing $20 from his employer's cash register, an auto mechanic is plunged into a series of increasingly disastrous circumstances which rapidly spiral out of his control.

Director: Irving Pichel
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Jeanne Cagney, Barbara Bates
Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A card cheat is threatened with exposure into joining a criminal enterprise that Holmes believes is controlled by Professor Moriarty.

Director: Leslie S. Hiscott
Stars: Arthur Wontner, Ian Fleming, Minnie Rayner
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A convict seeks revenge on the partners who cheated him of his treasure share.

Director: Maurice Elvey
Stars: Eille Norwood, Isobel Elsom, Fred Raynham
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Arthur Wontner ...
Isla Bevan ...
Ian Hunter ...
Graham Soutten ...
Miles Malleson ...
Herbert Lomas ...
Gilbert Davis ...
Margaret Yarde ...
Mrs. Smith
Roy Emerton ...
The Tattooed Man
Edit

Storyline

A young woman turns to Sherlock Holmes for protection when she's menaced by an escaped killer seeking missing treasure. However, when the woman is kidnapped, Holmes and Watson must penetrate the city's criminal underworld to find her.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 August 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Zeichen der 4  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Roy Emerton. See more »

Goofs

In the original Sherlock Holmes stories, Holmes's residence and consulting room were located at 221B Baker Street in London. However, an early establishing shot in the film shows Holmes's address to be 22A Baker Street. See more »

Quotes

Jonathan Small: Listen to me! How many times do I gotta knock it into your block that when you done something the law says you shouldn't, don't start changing the new places. It's then that you get spotted!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Many Faces of Sherlock Holmes (1985) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Best of the Holmes films with Arthur Wontner
11 October 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I've seen all four extant films with Arthur Wontner playing Sherlock Holmes (the others are "The Sleeping Cardinal," "The Triumph of Sherlock Holmes" and "Silver Blaze"), and this one is definitely the best. Associated Talking Pictures clearly had better facilities than Twickenham (the company that made the others), and the multiple producers (including Rowland V. Lee and Basil Dean, who had previously directed a Holmes film himself) picked a story with lots of action and hired a capable director, Graham Cutts. Cutts usually gets dismissed patronizingly in biographies of Alfred Hitchcock (Cutts directed a number of films in Britain in the early 1920's on which Hitchcock assisted, including "The Rat" and "The Triumph of the Rat" with Ivor Novello) as a mediocre director who drank and womanized his way out of a major career. Judging by his work here, Hitchcock fans should probably be looking at Cutts as an influence on the Master; this film MOVES (most of the other Wontner Holmes films are boring and plodding), it's clearly staged with a sense of pace, it makes good use of unusual camera angles (including a surprising number of overhead shots), and the final fight scene (though obviously done with a stunt double for Wontner) is a genuinely exciting action highlight. Cutts also gets a marvelous villain performance out of Graham Soutten, and effectively uses the sound of his peg leg at a time when the art of suggesting off-screen action with sound effects was common in the U.S. but relatively unknown in Britain. He also makes Wontner a more convincing Holmes than in his other films in the role — Wontner even LOOKS younger here than he did in "The Sleeping Cardinal," made two years earlier — and Ian Hunter is a more effective Watson than usual even though it's a bit jarring to see a Watson who's clearly taller than his Holmes. As someone who'd watched the other Wontner Holmes films wondering what all the fuss was about — he's always seemed overrated in the role to me — this one has raised my opinion of Wontner as Holmes considerably. Isla Bevan is a striking leading lady with an interesting resemblance to Ginger Rogers — later one of the cinematographers on this film, Robert de Grasse, became Ginger Rogers' favorite cameraman at RKO.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?