Better quality than Volume One, but still problems...
meiringen | the Midwest | 08/30/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Volume two contains THE CROOKED MAN and THE SPECKLED BAND, two of the very best adaptations in the series.The quality of transfer from 16mm on this DVD is superior to the first volume (although still slightly grainy), but there are some problems.THE CROOKED MAN does have some image stability problems, which causes the image to jump very slightly up and down at times (and actually roll on one of my DVD players). There is also a slight greenish tint to the fist few minutes of the episode. THE SPECKLED BAND also has some image stability problems, especially in chapter five (the train sequence) where the right side of the screen shifts slightly, causing the image to "float". There are also sound synchronicity issues in both episodes, very brief, but noticeable nonetheless. Both episodes do have lint (at the top of the frames), scratches and holes intermittently, which could have been cleaned up digitally. The sound is good throughout the DVD--none of the warbling that marred the first DVD in the series occurs here.Jeremy Brett and David Burke are at their best in well-scripted adaptations of the original stories. The supporting players are wonderful as well.There are also a photo gallery, biographies and filmographies, and a list of Sherlockian and Jeremy Brett Societies.In all, a much better quality DVD than Volume One, and, despite the problems, I'd recommend this DVD, especially if your VHS tapes have started to degrade. One hopes that the quality will continue to improve, and I eagerly await the next volume."
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Vol 2.
JASON BECKETT | NORWICH, NORFOLK United Kingdom | 09/10/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As a big fan of Sherlock Holmes, and Jeremy Brett I was delighted to see the release of the first series on DVD by MPI.The overall quality of the DVD's has been good, the standard of the picture is high, and the sound quality is acceptable.The second DVD in the series is an improvement on the first, however the quality of the sound could be improved, as bad lip synchronization is distracting, particularly in the Speckled band.I have already placed an order for the 3 vol in the series, and I look forward to the future release of the second series."
A Slightly Marred Masterpiece
J. Wolfson | New York, NY | 10/12/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you read my review of the first edition of this DVD series, you would know I consider Jeremy Brett's Holmes to be superior to all other interpretations. If you didn't, now you do! After reviewing the DVD I read a review which itemized several technical flaws which I have since noted myself. This disc is no exception, as it includes one quite obvious flaw wherein Brett's face seems to spasm or jiggle unintentionally. Lord knows why this series hasn't garnered more attention, but if it had I can guarantee a bit more money and time would have been spent on the DVD's. The content is the most critical element (especially since there are NO special features save a few biographical screens) and again, it never fails to entertain. The Crooked Man is a rather heart-wrenching episode, showing the cruel machinations of an ambitious soldier and their deadly consequences. Although many episodes of this program are quite funny thanks to Brett's intensely mannered performance, this one relied on emotional content and dramatic irony to keep the viewer engaged. The Speckled Band was the first episode I was lucky enough to see when my mother introduced me to the series, and it too tells a striking and tragic story.
Both episodes are generally humorless but continued the tradition of simple, loyal reproduction of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's tales. Brett is always fantastic and will be missed. (If you are like me, and you usually find something Holmes does or says very funny in each episode, listen for the British military jargon in The Crooked Man. It sounds as strange and silly to me as US army terminology must sound to them.)"