April 4, 2014 |
Germs and detectives might not seem like they're connected. But their link, as a certain fictitious sleuth might say, is elementary. In Thomas Goetz's fascinating and entertaining new page turner of a book, "The Remedy: Robert Koch, Arthur Conan Doyle, and the Quest to Cure Tuberculosis," we are transported to the final decades of the 19th century. The age of electricity was dawning. And in laboratories and on imaginary London streets, men armed with microscopes and the power of observation first used science to tackle the twin scourges of crime and disease.
December 14, 2012 |
For the generations of men who have wondered what it is women want, this year has made it fairly obvious. We want a man of devastating intelligence, cerebrally and physically nimble, whose vast store of arcane knowledge is foundation for a super-human ability to solve problems and the fascinating, frustrating wall that protects a tender heart. We want Sherlock Holmes. FOR THE RECORD: "Sherlock": A Notes on the Year column about television in the Dec. 16 Calendar section said that the series "Sherlock" airs on BBC America.
December 19, 2011 |
After the soft debuts of two heavily touted sequels over the weekend, Hollywood is fearful there may not be much holiday cheer at the box office this Christmas. "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows" and "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked" got off to disappointing starts, continuing the year's downward slide for the movie business. This past weekend receipts were off 12% compared with the same period in 2010. "Sherlock" and "Alvin" sold far fewer tickets than prerelease audience surveys had projected.
April 8, 2014 |
Glamorous characters and monstrous villains. Drama and intrigue presented in regularly occurring episodes. Every installment avidly dissected. Fan outrage over missteps. I know: You're thinking " Game of Thrones . " But for me this synopsis brings to mind the original Sherlock Holmes saga -- and the downside of a bestseller in any era, Victorian or today. In her column, " Bring Me My Dragons!, " this week, the New York Times' Maureen Dowd described her instant conversion to passionate fan of “Thrones.” (I'd insert a catty remark here, except I'm hooked on the "Borgen" saga .)
May 31, 2009 |
He's probably the most adapted literary character in history -- and perhaps the only nonexistent person with an honorary degree from the Royal Society of Chemistry. Upward of 70 actors have portrayed him in more than 200 films, since the early days of silent movies. But there's not been a major cinematic adaptation of Sherlock Holmes in decades.
December 9, 2009
"Sherlock Holmes," the latest incarnation of Arthur Conan Doyle's analytical, coke-loving sleuth, opens Christmas Day, starring Robert Downey Jr. as the Baker Street detective and Jude Law as Watson, his cohort in crime-solving. So it's elementary that the game is afoot to pay homage to previous cinematic Holmeses. On Monday at the Billy Wilder Theatre in Westwood, the UCLA Film and Television Archive is screening 1944's "The Scarlet Claw" and "The Spider Woman," which star the most famous celluloid Holmes and Watson: Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce.
February 13, 2011 |
Death Cloud A Novel Andrew Lane Farrar, Straus & Giroux: 320 pp., $16.99 It is extremely unusual for a literary character to remain popular for more than a century. But Sherlock Holmes is no ordinary character. Ever since the eccentric, pipe-smoking detective first appeared on the page in 1887, the tweedy London logician has been revered and emulated, the subject of 200-plus films and television shows and dozens of literary spinoffs. So it's only natural that Arthur Conan Doyle fans may be curious about what may have shaped the detective in his youth.
September 25, 1997 |
We can deduce what city we're in, and we haven't even seen a skyline. It's elementary, Watson. The fog. "The Mask of Moriarty," Hugh Leonard's Sherlock Holmes spoof, at the Old Globe Theatre, starts with a thick blanket of fog on Waterloo Bridge in London. But unlike the fog in a straight-up detective story, this one demands comment, and a couple of characters are overcome by hacking coughs in the play's opening moments.
August 18, 2010 |
In the strange case of the derelict house, there's no mystery surrounding the identity of its most famous occupant. Not only did Arthur Conan Doyle live at Undershaw, but he designed the place himself and produced some of his finest work under its gabled roofs, including "The Hound of the Baskervilles. " What baffles John Gibson is how the home of one of Britain's best-known authors has been all but abandoned, left to fall into disrepair and pegged for conversion into a block of apartments.
November 22, 1990 |
"Sherlock Holmes" is a creaky old melodrama that cries out for the swashbuckling heroics of a matinee idol like William Gillette, for whom it was created at the turn of the last century. Its current incarnation at the Newport Theatre Arts Center is a hollow parody with neither a romantic heartbeat nor a genuine comic sensibility. Director John Alexander Lee force-feeds the geriatric script with bits of stagy humor and some broad looks, but the body of the work still lies dead on the table.