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4.4 out of 5 stars
87
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 17 May 2014
One of my fondest memories, as a child in the 1970's, was staying up late on a Friday night, with my family, to watch the horror double-bill. This usually consisted of an old b&w Universal film and a colour Hammer film. Great times sadly gone.

I love this version of The Hound Of The Baskervilles (along with the Basil Rathbone one). I find it sad that critics always deride Hammer movies. Some were awful admittedly, but when they were good they couldn't be beaten. I'm still waiting for a superior interpretation of Dracula!

I've removed one star for the quality of the picture and sound. They haven't remastered either and it suffers for it. There is still a lot of dirt/scratches on the print and the sound is very quiet. If you increase the volume too much the sound becomes distorted.

Hopefully, one day, these old movies will be treated with the respect they truly deserve and a remastered edition will be made available.

So, turn off your mobile phone (the scourge of the modern age), pour yourself a glass of your favourite tipple, sit back and soak up the chilling ambience of a classic Hammer movie. Better than all that CGI nonsense currently playing at your local multiplex!
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on 30 March 2017
Classic film and you can't go wrong with this gem.
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on 10 June 2017
Great
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on 17 May 2017
Excellent. Very good old style horror film
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on 27 April 2017
Brilliant classic
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on 27 July 2012
Though this is one of my favorite film adaptations of the Holmes story and Cushing and Lee are great (5 stars for them) I was misled into buying this on the basis of the description provided by Amazon that this DVD was "Aspect Ratio 1.85:1; Full-Frame Widescreen 16x9". Now granted, that description seems contradictory: it can be either full-frame or 16x9, not both. The listing of the film's aspect ratio tipped the balance for me and caused me to believe it would be an anamorphic transfer but alas, it is the same 4:3 letterboxed DVD as its Region 1 counterpart. So sad. Please remove the misleading details so no one else is similarly tripped up.
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on 9 January 2007
Adapted from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's most famous Sherlock Holmes story, Terence Fisher's film of The Hound of the Baskervilles is one of the very best attempts to immortalise the Great Detective on film. The movie has several things in its favour, notably a director at the top of his game, teamed yet again with the initial Bray crew who made Hammer's initial run of gothic fantasies so memorable; in particular Jack Asher's cinematography deserves special praise. The cast, too, is almost flawless; in terms of faithfulness to the literary source, the Holmes and Watson team of Peter Cushing and Andre Morell is second only to the Jeremy Brett / David Burke pairing of the Granada TV series, twenty-five years later. The supporting performances are respectable, with such British cinema stalwarts as John Le Mesurier, Miles Malleson, and Francis DeWolff giving their usual accomplished turns, and David Oxley memorably evil as the depraved Sir Hugo Baskerville. The film doesn't quite follow the source novel, subtracting several characters and beefing up the roles of others, but as this is one of the most-adapted stories in TV and film history that is hardly a bad thing; this 1959 adaptation is easily the most enjoyable, being more action-packed than either the 1939 Basil Rathbone version or the 1988 Brett TV movie, whilst still building up a memorable atmosphere of menace and dread, aided by James Bernard's typically doom-laden score.
The only real flaw in the film (and this is perhaps a controversial opinion) is the casting of Christopher Lee as the victimised Sir Henry Baskerville. Lee is, of course, typically professional in the role, and there is nothing technically wrong with his performance; but after viewing his more forceful performances opposite Cushing in other, more even-handed movies, made both before and after this one, it is a little hard to accept him as a physically weak, mild-mannered aristocrat who is constantly in awe of Cushing's dynamic Holmes. The fact that he towers above both Cushing and Morell, supposedly his bodyguards, doesn't help either; surely an actor who would have been a better fit for the role would have been Francis Matthews, Cushing's young co-star in the previous year's The Revenge of Frankenstein.
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Although a box-office disappointment in its day, Hammer's adaptation of Sherlock Holmes' most famous adventure isn't just one of the studio's finest films, but one of the very best Holmes films too - it even overshadows the much-loved Basil Rathbone-Nigel Bruce version. Reuniting the Dracula team of Peter Cushing (Holmes), Christopher Lee (Sir Henry Baskerville) and director Terence Fisher and adding Andre Morell as Watson to the mix, it revels in the more gothic elements of the plot, something Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would surely have appreciated. With a brisk running time, a tight script and strong characterisation (Watson is no clown here), it works a treat, and looks one too thanks to Jack Asher's cinematography and Bernard Robinson's design, which skilfully disguise the low budget. Unfortunately, while MGM/UA's DVD boasts a good transfer, the extras from the Region 1 NTSC disc - an interview with Christopher Lee, who also reads extracts from the novel - have been dropped from the European PAL release. It's still a worthy addition to any Hammer or Holmes collection, but you might want to consider picking up the US edition rather than the barebones UK issue.
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on 18 March 2004
It would be easy to dismiss this film as 'a classic Hammer' a term which is slightly double edged - but this film is a classic in every sense, and resoundingly British. The set designs are amazing, with Baker Street and Baskerville Hall being evocatively recreated. The mix between location shooting and the set of the moors is seamless and most unobtrusive. Terence Fisher's direction is again proven to be peerless - not indulging in any unnecessary movements or bizarre angles (compare and contrast to the Corman films), but a meticulous accumulation of detail - quite in keeping with Holmes and particularly Cushing's performance.
With one of the greatest British film actors in the form of Cushing, and one of cinema's enduring icons in the form of Lee, this film was always ensured a cult following. But in this instance, much more wider appreciation is needed. Cushing performance is the very embodiment of Conan-Doyle's prose writing, Lee, playing against type gives one of his greatest early performances. Andre Morell again throws new light on Watson - not a bumbling Nigel Bruce figure, but as Conan-Doyle wrote him, a highly intelligent competant military surgeon who unfortunately has to spout questions to keep the audience informed about Holmes' motivation.
However, one constant criticism of the film has been the fact that the Hound is not entirely convincing. This is true, but in the context of the film, it is entirely appropriate, thus negating all of the criticism.
Alongside 'The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes', this must be the greatest Conan-Doyle adaptation, and one that richly deserves to be re-discovered. This DVD is a bit scant - only a trailer for extras, but nonetheless, the film itself is a true great.
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on 6 January 2008
I love this movie! It is a true gem for fans of vintage British film, and I was amazed at not having seen this earlier, as it is a classic. Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing make great performances in this beautifully shot, tightly paced Sherlock Holmes chiller, which has stood the test of time without problem. This is my favorite among the many collaborations that Lee and Cushing made throughout their career. The sets are gorgeous and create just the right atmosphere. Who needs CGI? They sure don't make them like this anymore.
5 out of 5.
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