Sherlock Holmes, the fictional character created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has given birth to a whole new genre of literature. Holmes is famous for his astute logical reasoning and has featured in four novels and 56 short stories. First published in the 19th century it has been published over and over again, adapted for films and television. The credit must be given to the author that even after so many tears the character he created is still popular with people still eager to see him.
The Complete Sherlock Holmes Collection is a new Blu-ray box set containing 14 films from the 1930s and 40s on a total of five discs. Basil Rathbone, during Hollywood’s golden age had done 14 films as Holmes over seven years. And no doubt he was the most definitive Holmes. Nigel Bruce, who was Rathbone’s off screen friend, had acted in those films as his crime solving associate, Dr. Watson. The entire Rathbone-Bruce collaboration is now available in this impressive five-disc Blu-ray package from MPI Home Video.
This collection is special because of the extensive restoration work done by the UCLA Film & Television Archive. The collection starts with 1939’s The Hound of the Baskervilles and ends with the 1946 Dressed to Kill. The prints are sharp, the blacks, whites and grays more defined, the audio cleaned up. In fact the set includes an interview with UCLA film preservationist Robert Gitt, who summarizes nicely the restoration process and some of the unique challenges the films presented. The restoration work took a total of ten years.