‘The Great Mouse Detective: Mystery in the Mist Edition'
With the renewed popularity of Sherlock Holmes on the big screen (Guy Ritchie's rousing blockbusters starring Robert Downey Jr.) as well as on television (the BBC's excellent update “Sherlock,” CBS' new modern version “Elementary”), it's simple to deduce that the timing couldn't be better for “The Great Mouse Detective” to make its high-definition debut.
But Disney doesn't take any extra steps to capitalize on Sherlock's recent re-emergence with its “Mystery in the Mist Edition” Blu-ray, which features the high-definition transfer but no other upgrades. Although the 1986 film was made in an awkward phase for the Mouse House — the studio's renaissance began three years later with “The Little Mermaid” — it boasts an entertaining, family-friendly mystery, stellar voice talents and some truly revolutionary animation for the time.
Based on “Basil of Baker Street,” a children's book series created by Eve Titus, the mouse tale is set in an appropriately foggy Victorian London. Young Scottish rodent Olivia Flaversham (Susanne Pollatschek) is quietly celebrating her birthday with her talented toymaker father (Alan Young) when a villainous peg-legged bat named Fidget (Candy Candido) breaks in and spirits away the elder Flaversham.
Wandering the back alleys of London, Olivia encounters Dr. David Q. Dawson (Val Bettin), a physician just returning from military service in Afghanistan, who helps her track down famed mouse detective Basil of Baker Street (Barrie Ingham). The investigator not only lives in the same house as Sherlock Holmes — voiced by the legendary Basil Rathbone in a brief cameo — but shares his human counterpart's uncanny deductive skills as well as many of his personality quirks.