The Seven-Per-Cent Solution (1976) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • Concerned about his friend's cocaine use, Dr. Watson tricks Sherlock Holmes into travelling to Vienna, where Holmes enters the care of Sigmund Freud. Freud attemts to solve the mysteries of Holmes' subconscious, while Holmes devotes himself to solving a mystery involving the kidnapping of Lola Deveraux.

  • Dr. Watson is growing increasingly concerned at Sherlock Holmes' use of cocaine and the fantasies they produce. The great detective's use of a 7% cocaine solution has led him to believe that Prof. Moriarty, who was his brother Mycroft's childhood tutor, is a criminal mastermind running the London underworld. Holmes will die in a year if he continues to use cocaine at his current rate and Watson contacts Dr. Sigmund Freud in Vienna to for assistance. Under a pretext devised by Watson and Mycroft, Holmes, Watson and the ever trusty Toby set off to Vienna. Under Freud's care, he slowly and painfully goes through withdrawal. He doesn't fully revive however until he joins Freud in the strange case of Lola Deveraux, another of Freud's patients who was addicted to cocaine. When she is kidnapped, they set off to rescue her. In his final act, Freud also determines why Holmes is the man he is.

  • 1891. Famed British detective Sherlock Holmes is a cocaine addict, speculation being that he started his regular injections of a seven per-cent solution of the drug to relieve the boredom between cases. He has been publicly persecuting who he considers his arch nemesis, aged Mathematics Professor James Moriarty. Holmes' loyal associate, Dr. John Watson, who only knows Moriarty by name through Holmes' rants against him, believes the addiction to cocaine is fueling Holmes' persecution, especially after he finally meets Moriarty, who he believes to be a decent person. Knowing that Holmes would not go willingly, Watson and Holmes' brother, Mycroft Holmes, with Moriarty's assistance, enact a plan to get Holmes to Vienna to be under the care of Dr. Sigmund Freud, who is reported to be able to cure patients of cocaine addiction partly through the use of hypnosis. The plan to get Holmes to Freud in Vienna works, Holmes who is initially a reluctant patient. Through the treatment, which includes Holmes going through painful withdrawal, Holmes is initially also reluctant to get involved in a case of another of Freud's former cocaine-addled patients, singer Lola Devereaux, who was found by the river seemingly in an effort to commit suicide. There is only a case in which Holmes can get involved as he surmises, based on evidence, that Devereaux's attempted suicide and her being back on cocaine is solely the result of she having been abducted and held captive, her captivity from which she was able to escape. Holmes, Watson and Freud, who has his own powers of investigative deduction, work on the case together, knowing that they have to discover who abducted her and why, her abductor who may try it again.

  • To treat his friend's cocaine induced delusions, Watson lures Sherlock Holmes to Sigmund Freud.


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