Young Sherlock Holmes (1985) - Rotten Tomatoes

Young Sherlock Holmes1985

Young Sherlock Holmes (1985)




Critic Consensus: Young Sherlock Holmes is a charming, if unnecessarily flashy, take on the master sleuth.

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Movie Info

Also released under the title Young Sherlock Holmes and the Pyramid of Fear, this film follows the adventures of young John Watson (Alan Cox) when he is shipped off to boarding school and meets up with the brilliantly bizarre Sherlock Holmes (Nicolas Rowe). The two boys strike up a friendship and promptly become involved in the investigation of a number of mysterious murders. When their curiosity gets them into trouble with a dangerous religious cult, Watson and Holmes must struggle to avoid capture while attempting to notify the authorities.

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Nicholas Rowe
as Sherlock Holmes
Nicolas Rowe
as Sherlock Holmes
Alan Cox
as John Watson
Sophie Ward
as Elizabeth
Susan Fleetwood
as Mrs. Dribb
Freddie Jones
as Cragwitch
Nigel Stock
as Waxflatter
Brian Oulton
as Master Snelgrove
Donald Eccles
as Rev. Nesbitt
Matthew Ryan
as Dudley's Friend
Matthew Blaksted
as Dudley's Friend
Jonathan Lacey
as Dudley's Friend
Walter Sparrow
as Ethan Engle
Nadim Sawalha
as Egyptian Tavern Owner
Roger Brierley
as Mr. Holmes
Vivienne Chandler
as Mrs. Holmes
Lockwood West
as Curio Shop Owner
John Scott Martin
as Cemetery Caretaker
George Malpas
as School Porter
Willoughby Goddard
as School Reverend
Michael Cule
as Policeman with Lestrade
Ralph Tabakin
as Policeman in Shop Window
Nancy Nevinson
as Hotel Receptionist
Michael Hordern
as Older Watson
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News & Interviews for Young Sherlock Holmes

Critic Reviews for Young Sherlock Holmes

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (3)

... it's a perfectly agreeable family entertainment, a craftsmanlike fantasia on Conan Doyle.

January 3, 2018 | Full Review…

There is something about Holmes's elegant, haunting, and whisperingly melancholic distance, his analytical remove from the world, that inspires a desire for glimpses of the baroque corridors of labyrinthine interiors.

December 5, 2003 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

If these story elements seem typical of Conan Doyle, there is also a lot in this movie that can be traced directly to the work of Steven Spielberg, the executive producer.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Time has not been very friendly to this teen thriller that in my household used to be "fantastic". [Full review in Spanish].

February 17, 2020 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

This is the origin story for the world's first consulting detective that Conan Doyle was never considerate enough to write for us...

March 23, 2010 | Full Review…

The idea to center on Holmes and Watson as young men is good and original but the execution is rather poor and Levinson's direction is impersonal.

June 30, 2005 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Young Sherlock Holmes

Even almost 35 years later there are some really interesting and groundbreaking aspects about this film. First of all, it includes one of the first CGI creatures (the window picture knight) and had a Pixar team working on those effects. It's also worth noting how especially the beginning of Sherlock and Watson meeting at school precursors the Harry Potter films in mood and style, then you realize Chris Columbus wrote this. The film also includes one of the first post credits scenes that I can remember, aiming for a sequel that never came. As far as Sherlock cases go, this is a rather mediocre one made up for the film. During the surprisingly dramatic and action packed showdown our hero climbs, fights and fences more than he's using his brain, that seems a bit out of character. The creators clearly wanted to give him a bit of an Indiana Jones treatment, albeit a mild one. That's still pretty entertaining with quite some wasted potential.

Jens S.
Jens S.

Super Reviewer

A great all too little known film from '86. Set in Sherlock Holmes school days setting the story background as he becomes the worlds most famous detective. I remember seeing this at the cinema and it is just the sort of film full of action and adventure everyone should love. Steven Spielberg was involved in the production and it shows. This film has a feel to it like the Mummy and Indiana Jones films. It also has some very good SFX for the time, including very early use of cgi. If you have missed this film then you are missing out, track it down!

Dean King
Dean King

Super Reviewer

I might have loved this more if I didn't love Sherlock Holmes. But, I do. The plot seemed hopelessly contrived and the acting--with the notable exception of Watson--wooden. The sets were good, though, as were the costumes.

Bathsheba Monk
Bathsheba Monk

Super Reviewer

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