Returning to his family's manor house on the lonely moors after his father dies under mysterious circumstances, Sir Henry Baskerville is confronted with the mystery of the supernatural hound that supposedly takes revenge upon the Baskerville family. The famous detective Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr. Watson are brought in to investigate.Written by
Jeremy Lunt <email@example.com>
For the climactic scene between Sir Henry and the hound, Margaret Robinson revealed that "they duplicated the part of the set in miniature where the dog was to leap onto Sir Henry. A small boy named Robert was dressed to duplicate Sir Christopher Lee. The dog couldn't bear the sound of crumpled paper, and the idea was he would go straight for a prop man as he crumpled it. What we didn't know is that Colonel hated small boys, too. The prop man caught the dog in mid-air before he got to Robert." See more »
After Stapleton is shot, the dog starts to run past him. Stapleton clearly pulls the dog onto him to make it look like he is being attacked. See more »
A Vigorous Retelling Of The Classic Thriller, "HAMMER"-Style...
The initial version of HOUND, released in 1939, was the first to introduce Sir Basil Rathbone as the immortal detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, eventually resulting in the actor being the most identified in the role. Twenty years on, his contemporary, Peter Cushing took a stab at it as well, and the results are equally as gratifying.
It's interesting to note as well that Andre Morell's interpretation of Dr. John Watson, Holmes' steadfast companion and confidante, paints a more capable and robust picture of the cultured sidekick than the cloud of befuddlement that always seemed to surround Nigel Bruce in his performance.
Like Old Faithful, Hammer vet Terence Fisher directs HOUND as more of a stunning crime thriller with horror elements than an out-and-out costume romp, much like the others that the studio became famous (or infamous) for. Allegedly the start of a planned series, the idea was scrapped when Holmes didn't catch on with latter audiences, who were more drawn to Hammer's "Monster" movies with werewolves and vampires.
The best treat of all in this case, though, besides seeing British character vets in action like Morrell, John Le Mesurier (Barrymore, the manservant), Francis De Wolff (Doctor Mortimer) and a hysterical turn by Miles Malleson as Bishop Frankland, (worthy of Barry Fitzgerald), is seeing Cushing and Christopher Lee as Sir Henry Baskerville sharing scenes together, no matter how briefly, in a non-"Dracula"-inspired context.
If you love old-school mysteries, and Hammer films especially, be sure to add this one to your "Must-Rent" list.
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