Dir: Billy Wilder
Starring: Robert Stephens and Geneviève Page
Holmes takes on the case of a Belgian woman in search of her missing husband, which leads to Loch Ness and the legendary monster
The film offers an affectionate, slightly parodic look at the man behind the public façade, and draws a distinction between the ‘real’ Holmes and the character portrayed by Watson in his stories for The Strand magazine. The film was originally intended as a roadshow attraction, touring major cities only on its initial run. However, it was heavily edited on its original release and significant sections of the film are now missing. There is a short sequence in which Holmes and Watson travel by rail to Scotland. This train journey was in fact filmed on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway with a train hauled by Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Barton Wright Class 25 0-6-0 No.957, painted in its fictitious ‘L&NWR’ green, though sadly very little of the locomotive is shown in the completed film, save for a darkened semi-distant broadside going-away shot. The locomotive can also be found in this guise in The Railway Children (qv), which was filmed the same year. There is also a scene filmed at Nairn station on the Aberdeen-Inverness line. The attractive station is masquerading as ‘Inverness’ and a train of vintage stock is departing though we do not see (or hear?) the locomotive. The fact that the train silently pulls out suggests that a diesel was hauling the train.