A Century of Sherlock Holmes: The Great Detective On Screen

Elementary, my dear Cinephile! Investigate the classic to modern cinematic interpretations of literature's most intriguing detective.

February 13 - 27, 2019

"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth." But what does that mean when it comes to what may be the most prolific fictional character on screen? From 1908 to 2018, Holmes has been appeared on screens big and small over 250 times. The character affords a wide variety of interpretations and has been popular with some of the best performers of our times. Grab the nearest deerstalker hat, a briar pipe, and your best knowledge of deduction as we uncover "What is the truth of Sherlock Holmes?"


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The class is afoot! Join Sherlockian scholar Kris Hambrick for this three week course where we'll take an overview of Holmes on film, delve into the relative merits of each adaptation, and discuss the biggest question of all: Why is Holmes such an enduring character?

Class Specifics:
3 Wednesdays, February 13 - February 27, 2019
7:00 PM - 9:30 PM
SIFF Film Center classroom 
$45 | $40 SIFF Members
SIFF Cinema passes, vouchers, and other discounts not accepted.

Class Syllabus:
Week 1: Introduction & Canon Adaptations
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the earliest films, and the big two: Basil and Brett
(Holmes: William Gillette, Basil Rathbone, Arthur Wontner, Ronald Howard, Peter Cushing, Jeremy Brett) 

Week 2: Who Is Holmes, Anyway?
The psychology of the Great Detective and what happens when it goes wrong
(Holmes: Robert Stephens, George C. Scott, Nicol Williamson, Michael Caine, Ian McKellen, the mouse one) 

Week 3: The Once & Future Holmes
Modernizations, Why Holmes?, and What's Next?
(Holmes: Basil Rathbone, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jonny Lee Miller, Robert Downey, Jr.) 

Class Workload:
There are no required readings, and there are far too many films to demand a familiarity with all. A passing familiarity with Holmes and Watson may be heightened by acquainting yourself with the short story A Scandal in Bohemia and the first two chapters of A Study in Scarlet. Other readings/viewings may be suggested via email prior to class. 

About the Instructor:
Kris 'Pepper' Hambrick has been a Sherlockian since discovering PBS's "Mystery" at age 9. She's been published in Sherlockian fanzines, written about Holmes academically, was part of the planning committee for Sherlock Seattle, and last year appeared as Holmes in Driftwood Players' Baskerville. She otherwise divides her time between environmental education and producing theater with Hello Earth Productions.