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The Private Eyes (1980)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Mystery  |  17 April 1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,906 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 11 critic

This spoof of the Sherlock Holmes stories finds Inspector Winship and Dr. Tart investigating a strange death in a possibly haunted mansion, while dealing with the beautiful heiress and the ... See full summary »


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Title: The Private Eyes (1980)

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Cast overview:
Dr. Tart
Inspector Winship
Trisha Noble ...
Mistress Phyllis Morley
Mr. Uwatsum
Stan Ross ...
Suzy Mandel ...
Fred Stuthman ...
Lord Morley
Mary Nell Santacroce ...
Lady Morley
Robert V. Barron ...
Gas Station Attendant
Doll Voice (voice)


This spoof of the Sherlock Holmes stories finds Inspector Winship and Dr. Tart investigating a strange death in a possibly haunted mansion, while dealing with the beautiful heiress and the crazed staff which live therein. Written by Afterburner <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Who better to solve England's most puzzling mystery than these two international crime busters? See more »


Comedy | Mystery


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 April 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Detectives casi privados  »

Box Office


$18,014,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Laserdisc) | (TV)

Sound Mix:


See  »

Did You Know?


The film was among a number of pictures, mostly comedies, made and released between the mid-1970s and mid-1980s, that revived the old dark house / mansion movie. These films include: The Spiral Staircase (1975), Neil Simon's Murder by Death (1976), The Cat and the Canary (1978), The Private Eyes (1980), House of the Long Shadows (1983), Kenny Everett's Bloodbath at the House of Death (1984), Clue (1985), and Haunted Honeymoon (1986). See more »


As Phyllis leads Winship and Tart up the staircase. See more »


Dr. Tart: [What his mother said about Inspector Winship] You know what she always used to say? She said if you had another brain you'd be lonesome.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the main title sequence, the cartoon version of Inspector Winship (the Don Knotts character) is blowing on a tuba when the music credit comes up. The director of photography's name appears when two flashlight beams cross. See more »


Featured in Hollywood: The Gift of Laughter (1982) See more »

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User Reviews

Conway & Knotts "at it again" -- Pleasant nonsense
29 May 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Tim Conway & Don Knots are the definitive pair of fools. Here they are called upon to solve a double-murder. They receive their instructions from one of the victims, the "Lord" of a mysterious castle. The staff consists of various "freaks", all looking as though they are characters from a "fun house".

The slap stick (which is happening every minute throughout the film) is often so silly that belly-laughs are assured. Although predictable (we know that nothing serious could happen to our stupid heroes), the entire show is rather amusing and keeps the viewer's interest.

Tim Conway is credited as one of the writers. The DVD version includes many added features. Especially noteworthy is a full length commentary track running alongside the faded out action. Much interesting trivia is revealed about the entire production. Fans of the star comedians will enjoy this film, and the added attractions on the DVD will be a welcome bonus.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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