The most celebrated tale of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s canon, The Hound of the Baskervilles is set in the Victorian Age and was originally released by Twentieth Century-Fox in 1939. It is the first of fourteen Sherlock Holmes films starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce.
When Sir Charles Baskerville is killed outside of Baskerville Hall, his good friend Dr. Mortimer (Lionel Atwill) fears that the curse of the Baskervilles has struck once again. Mortimer enlists the help of Sherlock Holmes (Basil Rathbone), before yet another Baskerville can succumb to the evil legend.
Sir Henry Baskerville (Richard Greene) arrives in London to claim his inheritance. Mortimer takes Sir Henry to 221b Baker Street and expresses his fear for Sir Henry’s life. Baskerville soon learns that along with the grand mansion on the moor, comes a devilish curse, a curious butler (John Carradine) and a cast of bizarre neighbors.
Holmes, pressed with “other business,” sends Dr. Watson (Nigel Bruce) to accompany Sir Henry to the dreary moor to protect the young Baskerville from the legend of the wicked hound. Of course, with danger afoot, Sherlock Holmes may not be so far from the scene as is assumed. –MPI Home Video
Sidney Lanfield (April 20, 1898 – June 20, 1972) was a film director known for directing comedy films and later television programs.
The one-time musician’s first directing job was for the Fox Film Corporation in 1930; he went on to direct a number of films for 20th Century Fox. In 1941, he directed the Fred Astaire film You’ll Never Get Rich for Columbia Pictures, then moved to Paramount Pictures. There Lanfield worked on a number of film comedies. He is probably best remembered for directing actor Bob Hope in a number of films including My Favorite Blonde (1942), Let’s Face It (1943), Where There’s Life (1947), and The Lemon Drop Kid (1951). Lanfield’s most profitable film, however, was the first teaming of Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce as Holmes and Watson in 1939’s The Hound of the Baskervilles.
In the early 1950s the reputedly strict taskmaster-director moved to television where his vaudeville and comic background in films were put to use in television comedies including… read more
Seeing the Hammer adaptation of Hound of the Baskervilles kind of ruined this one for me. It's not a bad movie and the chemistry between Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce seems a couple notches better than Hammer's production. This version comes off as less ominous and the ending seems abrupt to the point where you wonder if the production's financing got cut off. Not a bad movie, but Hammer's version is more rewarding.