The Devil's Foot (film)

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The Devil's Foot
Directed byMaurice Elvey
Based on"The Adventure of the Devil's Foot"
by Arthur Conan Doyle
StarringSee below
CinematographyGermain Burger[1]
Release date
Running time
27 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

The Devil's Foot is a 1921 British short film directed by Maurice Elvey[2] starring Eille Norwood as Sherlock Holmes.[1]

Following "The Dying Detective" (1921), the film is the second in the Stoll Pictures' short film series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

Plot summary[edit]

While on vacation, Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson walk by the sea. Hoping to ask for directions back to their inn, they call upon a house but discover three dead people seated at a table and with no signs of violence. Initially, the victims' brother Tregennis is suspected, but when he is killed in a similar way, then the explorer Dr. Sterndale becomes a suspect.

Sterndale shows Holmes and Watson a note where Tregennis confesses to the murder of his siblings to acquire their property. The last third of the film is Sterndale's story told to the pair through a series of Flashbacks. Sterndale tells them that Tregennis had shown a great interest in Sterndale's exotic poisons and that Sterndale was in love with the sister and killed Tregennis in an act of revenge. The flashback shows Sterndale forcing Tregennis to write a confession at gunpoint. Holmes questions Sterndale for taking justice into his own hands, but when the police arrive, he tells them that Tregennis had committed suicide.

Differences from source material[edit]

The beginning of the film differs from "The Adventure of the Devil's Foot".[3]



In a contemporary review in 2011, Christopher Campbell called it "quite verbal for a silent picture" (33 text cards in 27 minutes), a relatively faithful adaptation but also appreciated the liberty taken with the source material for the beginning of the film.[3]


  1. ^ a b "The Devil's Foot (1921)", British Film Institute. Retrieved 14 July 2019.
  2. ^ Barnes, Alan (2011). Sherlock Holmes on Screen. Titan Books. pp. 13–17. ISBN 9780857687760.
  3. ^ a b Christopher Campbell. "Short Starts: Watch 5 Early “Sherlock Holmes” Films (Plus Muppets)",, 12 December 2011. Retrieved 14 July 2019.

External links[edit]