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The Sherlock Holmes Collection (23 Disc Box Set) [DVD] [1988]

4.4 out of 5 stars 85 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jeremy Brett, Edward Hardwicke, David Burke, Vincent Worth, Simon Williams
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 23
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Cinema Club
  • DVD Release Date: 12 May 2003
  • Run Time: 2356 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008N754
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 83,621 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Sherlock Holmes is the greatest of all fictional detectives, as famous for his deerstalker and pipe as his legendary powers of observation and deduction. He is an aloof and private man driven by a fierce intellect that gives him astounding brilliance and unfathomable eccentricity in equal measure. The late Jeremy Brett, the definitive Holmes, stars in these beautiful adaptations taken from the classic ITV1 series.

The complete collection, includes 5 feature length episodes (2 brand new to DVD) and 36 one hour episodes (2 episodes per volume).

Featuring guest appearances from stars such as John Thaw (Morse), Robert Hardy (Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets), Natasha Richardson (Maid In Manhattan), Joss Ackland (Lethal Weapon 2), Peter Vaughan (Remains Of The Day) and many more.


The Sherlock Holmes Collection is a comprehensive box set containing all 36 hour-long episodes plus the five feature-length specials of Granada TV's classic series starring Jeremy Brett. Originally screened in 1984, the series ran intermittently until the mid-1990s, when the leading actor's chronically failing health forced a final end (he died in 1995). Still hailed by many as the definitive Holmes, Brett presented the great detective as a solitary, nervous and depressive personality whose brilliant flashes of inspiration were interrupted by long bouts of introspection and drug-induced lethargy. In the later feature-length episodes, the actor's own ill-health added a poignant extra dimension that both deepened and darkened his portrayal of Holmes.

In a welcome departure from earlier adaptations, Dr Watson (originally played by David Burke, then by Edward Hardwicke) is a thoroughly sensible, pragmatic--if rather unimaginative--companion, not at all the bumbling sidekick made famous by Nigel Bruce in the Basil Rathbone era. Aside from impeccable central casting--bolstered by a host of distinguished thespian guest stars--and scripts that remain remarkably faithful to Conan Doyle's original stories, the series also boasts lavish period production design and a haunting music score from Patrick Gowers. Although latterly they both err too far on the side of melodrama, overall both the series and Jeremy Brett's tour de force performances are likely to remain unsurpassed.

On the DVD: The Sherlock Holmes Collection DVD box set might be complete, but the individual discs themselves are disappointingly spartan, with no additional features of any kind nor any attempt to clean up the rather scratchy 4:3 picture quality or the dull mono sound. --Mark Walker

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Let's get the bad news out of the way first - this "Sherlock Holmes" DVD collection has no extras of any kind; it's just the stories. I had heard dire warnings too about the picture quality, but I'm glad to say that it seems OK to me. Having watched the complete set (which comprises Adventures 1 and 2, Return, Casebook and Memoirs as well as the feature-length films), I would agree with the widely-held view that the first two series were the best. David Burke is perfectly cast as the unassuming, genial Watson, who despite his state of continual perplexity is neither the oaf nor the dimwit that other actors played him as. Much has been written about Jeremy Brett's portrayal of Holmes, the vast majority of it favourable, though with some criticism levelled at the later 90s adaptations. But in "Adventures", Brett is simply astonishing. Physically ideally suited for the part, he inhabits and commands the world of 221B to such a degree that you can scarcely imagine him playing or even being anyone else. With his slicked-back dark hair, sonorous voice and extraordinary razor-sharp face, Brett combined Holmes' intelligence and logic with all the nuances of neurosis, arrogance, humour, integrity and even hints of vulnerability and sexuality to create the most compelling screen characterisation to date.
The two "Adventures" series include some of Doyle's most intriguing stories, like "The Naval Treaty" and "The Resident Patient". But even in the less imaginative cases such as that of "The Copper Beeches", the direction, acting and particularly the attention to detail is so accomplished that the story instantly comes to life. What a beguiling moment it is when Holmes, possibly aroused by a flicker of desire as well as by mere curiosity, reaches out and briefly touches Natasha Richardson's hair.
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By Otto99 VINE VOICE on 4 Jun. 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Fantastic to have this series on DVD in the UK at last. Jeremy Brett is, for many, the definitive Sherlock and it is a delight to be able to see these adaptations again. Brett's performance is a remarkable one. His interpretation of the great detective in the early episodes is very true to the original stories, showing a cold, sometimes harsh figure who has no time for human foibles and trivialities. And yet, slowly, as the episodes progress and the years creep by, Brett's Sherlock grows more human, more kind, more eccentric; a warmer man, and one who, I suspect, shows far more of the actor beneath the skin. The six Casebook epsiodes are, for me, the best, and whilst some of the later programmes are, sadly, not up to much (Brett was very ill by this point), it is good to have the complete set together. Messrs Burke and Hardwicke give admirable support as their respective Watsons.
The boxset comes in a large, cardboard carrier, which is not luxurious but is eminently capable of storing them all. You get over 20 discs for your money too and it is cheaper than buying them all singly. Picture quality is good TV standard - as one would expect, the earlier episodes are the most prone to some graininess and colour loss, but this is by no means a problem and the image is absolutely fine - and, besides, only a real stickler would complain (I believe some of the mastertapes were damaged in some way, so we are lucky all episodes look this good). Sound quality is excellent too and the problems which marred the 80s/90s video releases of these programmes have been eradicated.
All in all, a superb collection of wonderful dramas - great locations, great period costume and setting, great supporting roles from a host of well-known British actors. And the great Jeremy Brett in his greatest triumph.
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By S. Lindgren VINE VOICE on 18 Jan. 2004
Format: DVD
I remember watching Jeremy Brett in the play by Jeremy Paul in what might well have been his last ever stage performance. I was too young to appreciate it fully, being only 10 years old at the time, and yet his, and Edward Hardwicke's staggering intensity never left me. Fifteen years later, I buy the series, which I had previously never seen, and the memories come flooding back.
Production of the first two series was excellent, with high-quality sets, a haunting score, adaptations as close to the stories as you are ever likely to get, and some brilliant performances by the various cast members in each episode. David Burke proved a superlative Watson in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, portraying the original character of a decorated, highly intelligent former Army, turned private doctor of medicine to perfection, and Edward Hardwicke in the later series picking up brilliantly as the (slightly) older Watson after David Burke left to join the Royal Shakespeare Company. The latter two series were less good (The Casebook and the Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes) with some occasionally dreadful melodramatic direction, and soundtracks that boosted the music levels to such a degree that it is nearly impossible to hear the dialogue. Not so good. I'd agree too that Granada has made no effort whatsoever with the DVD's sadly -they haven't cleaned up the picture, or sorted out the music levels in the later series. No special features either -I rarely use them, but some would have been nice. Like chapters in the individual episodes for example! Not a lot to ask. Still, I'm thankful that we've got them all back, for it is Jeremy Brett's performances that are the true measure of the series.
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