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The Sign of Four (1987)

The disappearance of a young woman's father and a mysterious note years later after the strange regular annual delivery of valuable pearls to her puts Sherlock Holmes on the case.

Director:

Peter Hammond

Writers:

Arthur Conan Doyle (by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), John Hawkesworth (dramatised by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Brett ... Sherlock Holmes
Edward Hardwicke ... Dr. Watson / Dr. John Watson
Robin Hunter Robin Hunter ... Major Sholto
Alf Joint ... McMurdo
John Thaw ... Jonathan Small
Kiran Shah ... Tonga
Jenny Seagrove ... Miss Mary Morstan
Rosalie Williams ... Mrs Hudson
Derek Deadman Derek Deadman ... Williams
Ronald Lacey ... Thaddeus & Bartholomew Sholto
Ishaq Bux ... Lal Chowder
Terence Skelton Terence Skelton ... Captain Morstan
Marjorie Sudell Marjorie Sudell ... Mrs Bernstone
Emrys James Emrys James ... Inspector Athelney Jones
Gordon Gostelow Gordon Gostelow ... Sherman
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Storyline

A young lady, Miss Mary Morstan, contact Sherlock Holmes for his help regarding her father, captain Morstan, who disappeared 10 years ago. Since his disappearance she annually receives a valuable pearl by post from an unknown person. The mystery leads Holmes and doctor Watson into an intricate plot regarding a lost treasure belonging to four convicts on the Andaman Islands. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 October 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Granada Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Athelney Jones makes his second appearance in a Granada Holmes episode, following "The Red-Headed League" --although he was played by a different actor in that episode. See more »

Goofs

Down at the quayside the dog leads Holmes to some barrels which he says are full of creosote. However when the dog jumps off one of the barrels, it rocks back and forth, showing it to be empty. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dr. John Watson: Very pretty young woman crossing the street. And I think she may be coming here.
Sherlock Holmes: Incidentally, I have glanced over your latest account of my work.
Dr. John Watson: Oh, yes?
Sherlock Holmes: Honestly, I cannot congratulate you upon it. Detection is, or ought to be, an exact science. Observation, deduction, a cold unemotional subject. You have attempted to tinge it with romanticism which has much the same effect as if you'd worked a love-story or an elopement into the fifth proposition of Euclid.
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Hound of the Baskervilles (1988) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Intricate Sherlock Holmes story gets the luxury of a two-hour TV treatment...
5 January 2010 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

JEREMY BRETT and EDWARD HARDWICKE head the cast of an excellent version of THE SIGN OF THE FOUR, given fine support by JENNY SEAGROVE, RONALD LACEY and JOHN THAW.

The intricate story begins with a young woman (Jenny Seagrove) coming to Holmes with a story involving the mysterious disappearance of her father. Several years after his death she began receiving yearly presents of priceless pearls, one by one each year. The story becomes more and more complex as more of the characters involved in her father's disappearance come to the fore. Among them, RONALD LACEY, who gives a quirky performance as twin brothers whose father wanted them to receive his inheritance. JENNY SEAGROVE and JOHN THAW are particularly interesting in well-defined supporting roles.

All the Victorian atmosphere is here along with elaborate settings and fine color photography. The two hours go by swiftly, since there's so much story to tell. Well worth watching with only a few scenes toward the end that seem to go on too long.


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