5.7/10
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22 user 7 critic

A Study in Scarlet (1933)

Passed | | Mystery, Thriller | 14 May 1933 (USA)
In London, a secret society led by lawyer Thaddeus Merrydew collects the assets of any of its deceased members and divides them among the remaining members. Society members start dropping ... See full summary »

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Writers:

(suggested by book "A Study in Scarlet") (as A. Conan Doyle), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Sherlock Holmes
...
June Clyde ...
Alan Dinehart ...
Merrydew (as Allan Dinehart)
John Warburton ...
John Stanford
...
Warburton Gamble ...
J.M. Kerrigan ...
Doris Lloyd ...
Mrs. Murphy
...
Will Swallow
Leila Bennett ...
Daffy Dolly
Wyndham Standing ...
Capt. Pyke
Halliwell Hobbes ...
Dearing
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Storyline

In London, a secret society led by lawyer Thaddeus Merrydew collects the assets of any of its deceased members and divides them among the remaining members. Society members start dropping like flies. Sherlock Holmes is approached by member James Murphy's widow, who is miffed at being left penniless by her husband. When Captain Pyke is shot, Holmes keys in on his mysterious Chinese widow as well as the shady Merrydew. Other members keep dying--Malcom Dearing first, then Mr. Baker. There is also an attempt on the life of young Eileen Forrester, who became a reluctant society member upon the death of her father. Holmes' uncanny observations and insights are put to the test. Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 May 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

En studie i rött  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The plot to this movie is actually quite similar to that of Belgian writer Stanislas-André Steeman's 1931 detective novel "six hommes morts", right down to its denouement. See more »

Goofs

Holmes and Watson's address is given as 221-A Baker Street, rather than the more familiar 221-B. See more »

Quotes

Sherlock Holmes: You came to see me professionally.
Inspector Lestrade: Well, er, unofficially.
Sherlock Holmes: I see. Heads you win, tails I lose.
See more »

Connections

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

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Good for Its Era & Genre (Has No Real Similarity With the Story of the Same Name)
11 April 2005 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

This early sound-era portrayal of Sherlock Holmes is good for its era and genre, with solid acting and an interesting story that is set in a believably mysterious atmosphere. An important note is that the story has no real similarity with the Arthur Conan Doyle story titled "A Study in Scarlet", but rather draws its characters and material from several different stories, plus at least one Agatha Christie novel. As long as you don't expect to see the original story, there is certainly enough to make this a feature worth seeing.

Reginald Owen is solid as Holmes, although he does not leave his mark on the role in the way that Basil Rathbone and Jeremy Brett did. Owen does have the unique distinction of having played both Holmes and Dr. Watson (having played the latter in "Sherlock Holmes" the year before "A Study in Scarlet").

The rest of the cast likewise play their characters in a straightforward fashion, allowing the story and atmosphere to get the main focus. The one who does stand out is Anna May Wong, who adds beauty and a mysterious presence, although unfortunately she does not get a lot of screen time.

The story itself has numerous turns, and keeps you guessing. The atmosphere might not always be Holmes-like, but it is quite suitable for the story, and it is aided by good use of the lighting and photography. Overall, if you can set aside the misleading (for Holmes fans) title, it is an entertaining mystery with some good touches.


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