Sherlock Holmes

(Photo by Warner Bros. Thumbnail: Netflix, BBC.)

The Best Sherlock Holmes Movies and TV Shows (and the Worst)

Nearly 100 years after 1922’s Sherlock Holmes, the watershed movie that proved Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s character a Hollywood leading man, the detective remains on the case! He’s been adapted to movies and TV countless times, and we’ve organized all of his works which got a Tomatometer score in chronological order. That includes films from Basil Rathbone’s defining decades-long run accessorized with the deerstalker hat, Robert Downey Jr.’s blockbuster take, and Sherlock‘s modern spin with Benedict Cumberbatch. To complete the picture, Holmes-adjacent works are included, including Gene Wilder’s The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes’ Smarter Brother, Disney’s The Great Mouse Detective, and Netflix’s Enola Holmes, featuring Sherlock’s teenage sister as played by Millie Bobby Brown. Now let’s chase the thread through this study in scarlet tomatoes, as we reveal the best (and worst) Sherlock Holmes movies and series.


Sherlock Holmes (1922)

Adjusted Score: 67.264%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: This British production includes five of Arthur Conan Doyle's stories about the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. The stories presented are... [More]
Directed By: Albert Parker

Adjusted Score: 91.727%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Though it takes a few liberties with the Arthur Conan Doyle original, this film ranks as one of the best... [More]
Directed By: Sidney Lanfield

Adjusted Score: 100.256%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce make their second screen appearances as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in The Adventures of... [More]
Directed By: Alfred L. Werker

Adjusted Score: 100.361%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Based on Conan Doyle's The Adventure of the Empty House, this "Sherlock Holmes" entry finds Holmes (Basil Rathbone) and Dr.... [More]
Directed By: Roy William Neill


Terror by Night (1946)

Adjusted Score: 75.272%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: One of the later movies in the Sherlock Holmes series, in this one the sleuth is dodging death as he... [More]

Adjusted Score: 63.613%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Prelude to Murder is the last of the many Sherlock Holmes adaptations that starred Basil Rathbone as the observant and... [More]
Directed By: Roy William Neill

Adjusted Score: 95.431%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Sherlock Holmes (Peter Cushing) and Dr. Watson (Andre Morell) are summoned to investigate the murder of Sir Charles Baskerville. The... [More]
Directed By: Terence Fisher

Adjusted Score: 94.713%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: 'Private Life' is both an elegiac evocation of late Victorian England and a boldly modern take on the dark side... [More]
Directed By: Billy Wilder

Adjusted Score: 60.853%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The films of the world's greatest detective are spoofed in this mystery-comedy that centers on Sigerson Holmes, the brighter brother... [More]
Directed By: Gene Wilder

Adjusted Score: 79.714%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In this Sherlock Holmes adventure, the Great Detective's friend and chronicler Doctor Watson, concerned that Holmes' drug dependency is getting... [More]
Directed By: Herbert Ross


Murder by Decree (1979)

Adjusted Score: 80.016%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Sherlock Holmes is once again on the case, this time looking into the murder spree committed by Jack the Ripper.... [More]
Directed By: Bob Clark

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: This filmed version of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's beloved Sherlock Holmes tale is a spoof. In the story, Holmes and... [More]
Directed By: Paul Morrissey

Adjusted Score: 64.936%
Critics Consensus: Young Sherlock Holmes is a charming, if unnecessarily flashy, take on the master sleuth.
Synopsis: Also released under the title Young Sherlock Holmes and the Pyramid of Fear, this film follows the adventures of young... [More]
Directed By: Barry Levinson

Adjusted Score: 81.679%
Critics Consensus: The Great Mouse Detective may not rank with Disney's classics, but it's an amiable, entertaining picture with some stylishly dark visuals.
Synopsis: This animated children's film spoofs the Sherlock Holmes legend by recasting the major characters as rodents. Basil, the Great Mouse... [More]


Without a Clue (1988)

Adjusted Score: 52.5%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A drunken Sherlock Holmes is really just a cover for the real detective - Dr Watson.... [More]
Directed By: Thom Eberhardt


Sherlock Holmes (2009)

Adjusted Score: 77.049%
Critics Consensus: Guy Ritchie's directorial style might not be quite the best fit for an update on the legendary detective, but Sherlock Holmes benefits from the elementary appeal of a strong performance by Robert Downey, Jr.
Synopsis: The mysterious action-adventure, "Sherlock Holmes" staged by the renowned filmmaker Guy Ritchie for Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures.... [More]
Directed By: Guy Ritchie

Sherlock (2010)

Synopsis: The quirky spin on Arthur Conan Doyle's iconic sleuth pitches him as a "high-functioning sociopath" in modern-day London. Assisting him... [More]

Adjusted Score: 66.135%
Critics Consensus: Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is a good yarn thanks to its well-matched leading men but overall stumbles duplicating the well-oiled thrills of the original.
Synopsis: Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) has always been the smartest man in the room...until now. There is a new criminal... [More]
Directed By: Guy Ritchie

Elementary (2012)

Synopsis: Sherlock Holmes investigates crimes in modern-day New York City as a consultant to the NYPD and is assisted by Joan... [More]


Mr. Holmes (2015)

Adjusted Score: 94.888%
Critics Consensus: Mr. Holmes focuses on the man behind the mysteries, and while it may lack Baker Street thrills, it more than compensates with tenderly wrought, well-acted drama.
Synopsis: MR HOLMES is a new twist on the world's most famous detective. 1947, an aging Sherlock Holmes returns from a... [More]
Directed By: Bill Condon

Adjusted Score: 12.616%
Critics Consensus: The lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of the adventures of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson than does Holmes and Watson.
Synopsis: Legendary detective Sherlock Holmes and his partner Doctor Watson return for a comedic take on their classic literary partnership, as... [More]
Directed By: Etan Cohen

Miss Sherlock (2018)

Synopsis: Holmes and Watson are Japanese woman solving mysteries in modern Japan.... [More]


Enola Holmes (2020)

Adjusted Score: 99.101%
Critics Consensus: Enola Holmes brings a breath of fresh air to Baker Street -- and leaves plenty of room for Millie Bobby Brown to put her effervescent stamp on a franchise in waiting.
Synopsis: England, 1884 -- a world on the brink of change. On the morning of her 16th birthday, Enola Holmes (Millie... [More]
Directed By: Harry Bradbeer

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