Blu-Ray Review: The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most famous creations, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, have graced many books and featured in numerous adaptations, both on the big and small screen. As a double act, they’ve captivated audiences around the world, what with Holmes’ remarkable powers of deduction and Watson’s incredible knack of being in the right place at the right time. Whilst Watson serialised the great detective’s cases, we only really got a peak behind the curtain. The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes is his most personal story.

Sherlock (Robert Stephens) is being driven up the wall by boredom whilst Dr. Watson (Colin Blakely) is trying his his best to keep him away from morphine. This all changes when a mysterious young woman (Geneviève Page) arrives at their door. She has amnesia and is delivered by a taxi driver who rescued her from the Thames. Her case leads them on the trail of a missing engineer, ancient monsters and pitches them on the wrong side of Mycroft Holmes (Christopher Lee).

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes features Holmes and Watson as you’ve never seen them before. This is hardly surprising considering it’s directed by Billy Wilder. He injects his own personal magic into the story, turning a typical crime episode into a glittering light-hearted murder mystery full of high jinks, Nazis and daring capers. The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes is a wonderfully fresh and individual take on the great detective.

Special features:

  • Glorious 1080p presentation
  • Uncompressed PCM soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
  • A new video interview with film scholar Neil Sinyard
  • The Missing Cases (50 mins) – a presentation of the films deleted sequences, using script excerpts, production stills and surviving film footage.
  • Deleted Epilogue Scene (audio only)
  • Christopher Lee: Mr. Holmes, Mr. Wilder – an archival interview with Christopher Lee about working with Billy Wilder
  • Interview with editor Ernest Walter
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A collectors booklet featuring a new essay by Philip Kemp; the words of Billy Wilder; and rare archival imagery

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes is released on Blu-ray by Eureka Entertainment as part of their Masters of Cinema collection on 22 January.

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