Four countries--Great Britain, Belgium, Italy and Luxembourg--were in on the financing of 1991's Sherlock Holmes: Incident at Victoria Falls. At first glance, Christopher Lee seems too old to play Conan Doyle's master detective, but the script allows for this by having the story takes place on the eve of Holmes' retirement. As Dr. Watson, Patrick McNee returns to the "comic relief" mode established in the 1940s by Nigel Bruce, albeit with less empty-headedness than was customary with Bruce. The plot concerns the safe passage of a valuable South African diamond, and the multitude of robberies, recoveries and major and minor intrigues the transpire before the denouement at the titular falls. To establish time and place, King Edward VI (Joss Ackland) and Teddy Roosevelt (Claude Akins) make brief appearances. When originally presented on European television, Incident at Victoria Falls was a four-hour miniseries, with Jenny Seagrove appearing in a sizeable role. For its American syndicated-TV bow in 1992, the film was somewhat clumsily chopped down to two hours, and Seagrove's part was eliminated (though her name still appears in the opening and closing credits). Incident at Victoria Falls is strongest in its elegant ambience and attention to detail; it is least successful in its ham-handed comic interludes.
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