Why I Love… The Great Mouse Detective

In late 2019 I started to introduce some video content onto this blog which was a project I was really pretty excited about. I had recorded several posts where I discussed the reasons I love particular mystery-themed movies and also a book discussion about my favorite novel, A Kiss Before Dying. The views weren’t incredible but it was a chance to speak extemporaneously about things I liked which is fun to do.

Unfortunately that project ground to a halt when several videos I shot got corrupted before I could upload them (including a Five to Try with books from the British Library Crime Classics range – a video I should probably try and do again at some point) and by the time I could start over again the pandemic was underway and the house was anything but quiet. The idea was quietly shelved and I got on with other stuff. Like actually writing about books – ho, hum.

Well, as I was planning to take a break this week from watching Jonathan Creek and to catch up on my reading I decided that it might be fun to get this plan back on track and record another of these. The question was which movie to talk about.

As it happened I recently rewatched The Great Mouse Detective with my kid who is currently in a bit of a detective phase (which I am doing my best to support by providing lots of material). She enjoyed some parts very much while other bits struck her as a little slow compared to more recent Disney cartoons or mystery shows like The Inbestigators but that is very much a reflection of the era in which it was made.

As for myself, I am not going to pretend that this the greatest mystery ever written. You will notice the plot is not included in my list of five things. This was my first introduction to the idea of a detective though and specifically to the world of Sherlock Holmes and so while it is not necessarily a great mystery in its own right, I still appreciated revisiting it and had no difficulty thinking of five things I wanted to talk about:

Whether you share my nostalgic love of this film or not, I would love to hear your thoughts about it. Please feel free to share your opinions in the comments below.

6 thoughts on “Why I Love… The Great Mouse Detective

  1. The Great Mouse Detective is definitely a fun film! I agree on the Rube Goldberg scene song and some of the action scenes are really memorable.

    Have you seen Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostro? The climax of The Great Mouse Detective in Big Ben is obviously inspired by The Castle of Cagliostro (directed/written by Studio Ghibli’s Miyazaki). You don’t need any prior knowledge of the long-running Lupin the Third franchise either, and it’s an excellent animated adventure film. Many of Lupin the Third productions are more for an adult audience, but this one is for the whole family.

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    1. Thanks Ho-Ling. I have seen Lupin the Third but it was probably a decade ago, long before I heard of Arsene Lupin (or the Lupin the Third franchise) and so I would love to revisit it with that knowledge. Thanks for giving me a little shove in that direction!

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    1. I think it gets missed by a lot of people because of the time it went out – right before Disney’s renaissance began in the late 80s. I hope you’re able to track down a copy!

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  2. This was a blast from the past! Not the movie – I don’t think I’ve ever seen it – but the books!! Before Christie, there was definitely Basil of Baker Street! I don’t remember if I read all five of Eve Titus’ books or just some of them, but I had read enough Sherlock Holmes to appreciate the pastiche, and they weren’t bad mystery adventures at all! Just another factor in my dreaded life-long addiction. I appreciate you reminding me about them!

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    1. A few years ago I did a podcast with my wife where we read the books that were adapted into Disney movies and discussed how they compared with the films themselves. Unfortunately I don’t have those recordings any more but I read all of the Titus novels in preparation for that and I was surprised how much I enjoyed them and I appreciated how lovingly the whole thing was done.

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