Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Young Sherlock Holmes (1985)


Holmes : Nicholas Rowe
Dr. Watson : Alan Cox

  In the first scene a dart from a blow gun hits a man in the neck on the snowy London streets, He soon suffers from delusion that his dinner, a pheasant is attacking him. The delusions continue at home and he jumps out the window, killing himself.

  The scene shifts to the young Sherlock playing the violin in his dorm room who is just meeting his new room mate John Watson. Holmes is sort of a local legend at school. Precocious, egotistical and talented. Meanwhile another dart murder takes place.

  Sherlock finds about the deaths and thinks they are connected bit Mr. Lestrade doesn't. A jealous fellow student, Dudley, sets up Sherlock as a cheater and he is kicked out of school. He is going to regret leaving his friend Elizabeth behind. Watson is outraged.

   Holmes friend and mentor, Professor Waxflatter  who also is Elizabeth's uncle gets hit with a dart next. His delusions attack him too and he stabs himself to death fighting them off. Holmes is really involved in the case now. Watson finds the fall gun that someone has dropped at the scene.

 As Sherlock and Watson investigate the blow gun they find it is hooked to some followers of an Egyptian god. The followers use a blow gum gun that uses thorns that are dipped into a hallucinogenic. In a scene very reminiscent of the one in Gunga Din, Holme Watson and Elizabeth look out onto a cult  ceremony inside of a temple. People are being wrapped as mummies while evryone chants. Just like Cary Grant in Gunga, Sherlock sneaks down for a closer look. He screams to save the newly wrapped person who is still alive and is quickly pursued by everyone. Dodging darts they make their way out but all of them have been hit. All three start having hallucinations in a grave yard but make their way out.

  Holmes tries to get Lestrade to help but he won't. Holmes finds a picture in Waxflatter's room that has a picture of all the murdered men, except one. Professor Rathe, another of Sherlock's mentors, intervenes and tells Holmes and Watson that they must leave the college.

  Holmes continues the investigation. He identifies the surviving man, Mr. Cragwitch. he finds him and asks him why the cult has killed five men. Cragwitch tells the story. All five were partners in a venture to build a luxury hotel in Egypt. While digging they found the underground tombs of five princesses which they looted. The local villagers protested but the village was burnt to the ground by British troops. While telling his story Cragwitch gets hit with a thorn. 

  While investigating at her uncle's Elizabeth discovers that Professor Rathe is up to no good. Rathe takes were to be the fifth princess in the reburying ceremony the cult is planning. In the meantime Holmes figures out that Rathe is the culprit. He is off to save Elizabeth. Holmes saves the day but as he is leaving Rathe takes a shot at him that kills Eizabeth.

  Geared for kids the movie is just OK. It is too talky for kids and too juvenile for adults. It had great production values (it was produced by Stephen Spielberg), but the writing and acting was only fair.

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