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Starring Sherlock Holmes Hardcover – January 1, 2006

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Hardcover, January 1, 2006
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books (UK); 1St Edition edition (January 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1840232501
  • ISBN-13: 978-1840232509
  • Product Dimensions: 11.8 x 9.7 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,593,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

British Holmes expert Davies has updated the original 2001 edition of his comprehensive, copiously illustrated look at the film and TV portrayals of the great detective. As such, this is a must-have for die-hard Sherlockians, though film students and others may fault the author for not having done a better job of balancing breadth with depth. There are interesting tidbits and trivia throughout, starting with the earliest known Holmes film, Sherlock Holmes Baffled (1900), which ran for less than a minute. Davies intersperses his chronological survey of the films with chapters on such topics as Dr. Watson, prominent actors in the Holmes role (most notably Basil Rathbone and Jeremey Brett), and radio adaptations. Some might wish for more comparative analysis of, say, the many (mostly unsuccessful) efforts to translate The Hound of the Baskervilles to film. In addition, given that the last serious Holmes movie, Murder by Decree, appeared in 1979, more discussion of why such a staple of the cinema has fallen on hard times would have been welcome. Finally, in a page devoted to unmade films, Davies (Sherlock Holmes and the Scroll of the Dead) devotes disproportionate space to his own pastiches. Still, those who fondly remember Chris Steinbrunner's classic The Films of Sherlock Holmes (1978) will find much to like.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.


Slickly presented ...the text itself is satisfyingly thorough. A genuine pleasure to browse through, this truly is a class act. -- Film Review 1 October 2001

Well-researched ... A hugely enjoyable read from end to end. Undoubtedly one of the best Sherlock tomes. -- Total Film magazine 1 October 2001

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Charles Prepolec on January 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
For those interested in the film, television and stage portrayals of Sherlock Holmes, David Stuart Davies book Starring Sherlock Holmes is a `must have'! This beautifully designed and laid out large format hardcover is a treat in nearly every way. Most noticeable on the first read through are the glorious illustrations, nicely balanced between monochrome and colour, many of which seem to be previously unpublished, while images from some rather obscure productions are also present. While the pictures alone nearly justify the book, Davies text is equally rewarding.

The book begins with an introduction by Ian Richardson followed by a few pages of background on Conan Doyle, it then moves into a solid breakdown of films in a chronological manner. The early silent films are lumped together over 4 pages in a general overview sort of way, although Eille Norwood and John Barrymore each receive their own two-page spread. From those Davies moves into the talkies, generally giving one or two pages to each film, with major series (such as those featuring Wontner and Rathbone) being accorded individual title listings. The film listings are occasionally broken up by the insertion of nice background/overview pieces such as Basil Rathbone: The Ideal Holmes, Curtain Up: Sherlock Holmes on Stage and Jeremy Brett: Dancing in the Moonlight. These inserts allow the author a chance to range beyond specific titles and address various trends, periods or influential actors. My only criticism of the inserts is that these are occasionally teasers with rare photographs dropped in without much explanation other than a caption (as in a photo of Frank Finlay as Conan Doyle with Richard E.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jory on December 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I had previously bought a used copy of the David Stuart Davies book Holmes of the Movies: The Screen Career of Sherlock Holmes (1977). I found it to be a good read but I wanted something more up to date, so I bought this newer book by the same author, which I understand was first published in 2000 and updated in 2007. I hesitated for a long time because of the high price tag, but I shouldn't have worried, because I've found it to be quite enjoyable despite some flaws. It's a beautiful hardcover volume with nice glossy paper and lavish photographs on every page, and I probably would have found it worth the price even if it had no text at all, but the text that's there is mostly good.

The book isn't completely comprehensive, but it does cover the majority of Holmes films and TV shows that have been produced up until 2007 (you won't find any coverage of the 2009 film starring Robert Downey Jr or the 2010 BBC TV series starring Benedict Cumberbatch), and it even covers Holmes on the radio and stage. The various productions are listed in chronological order and take up anywhere from one to four pages. You get a brief plot summary at the beginning of each entry (which recounts the entire plot, including the ending, so beware of spoilers) and the text is a mixture of production information and opinion, both from Davies and from professional critics. Speaking of which...

The book has some critical flaws which keep me from giving it a perfect score, and the most egregious of these is the author's bias.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Karen R. Haynes on September 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great updated reference book on the Sherlock Holmes mysteries of film, TV, etc. Since pictures continue to be made about Holmes you have to update every now & then. Great pictures throughout. Also interesting information. A must for the Sherlock Holmes fan.
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