A Weekend With Sherlock Holmes at Wałbrzyska 3/5

The Silent Cinema Festival has traditionally been held at the Iluzjon cinema. Since the merger which established FINA, however, we also have at our disposal the premises of the newly-established institution. And so this year, for our Festival weekend, we can also invite Sherlock Holmes fans to 3/5 Wałbrzyska Street for plenty of interesting activities before the evening screenings at the Iluzjon. Together with the organisers of Sherlockon, we have prepared a programme of workshops, discussion panels, lectures, radio plays and film screenings, which means that even the most fastidious "Sherlockists" will find something of interest for them! 

Wałbrzyska 3/5, The Promised Land room, first floor

(with the exception of the "We're All Detectives" workshop)



11:00 "We're All Detectives" - 'film and detective' workshop by Mariusz Koryciński

The workshop participants will play detectives in an artistic labyrinth. Their task will be to solve a mystery associated with a certain Polish film - however, their task will be made more difficult by the fact that they will only learn what the puzzle is after some time. Based on their investigation, which will be conducted in groups and involve analysis of press clippings, statistics and film fragments, they will be asked to present the most likely solution. The workshop will be an intriguing experiment, the outcome of which will depend on the participants themselves and their cooperation. Some knowledge of Polish and world cinema will be very useful here. 

Number of places: 20

Target group: 16+ years old

Duration: 160' The Great Game workshop room | Second floor

Registration for the workshop at: https://forms.nina.gov.pl/wszyscy-jestesmy-detektywami/ 

Mariusz Koryciński - a PhD student in the Department of Rhetoric and Media at the Institute of Applied Polish Studies. He is passionate about the social and cultural contexts of cinema and also the literature surrounding the unsolved puzzle in question.


14:00 "Deduction Without a Word" - lecture by Katarzyna Czajka-Kominiarczuk (The Popculture Beast)

Sherlock Holmes is probably the most popular character for film adaptations, first appearing on screen just a few years after the birth of cinema itself. During her lecture on the early adaptations of the Sherlock Holmes stories, the speaker will focus on three silent movies about the famous detective: Sherlock Holmes Baffled by Arthur Marvin from 1900, The Devil's Foot by Maurice Elvey from 1921, and Sherlock Junior by Buster Keaton from 1924. 

Duration: 45'

Katarzyna Czajka-Kominiarczuk - a graduate of history and sociology, she is also a dab hand with glue and scissors in the documentation department of the Polityka weekly. In addition to her work on her blog, Zwierz Popkulturalny [The Popculture Beast], she also carries out research into the cinema of the interwar period.  


15:00 Discussion panel "The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes" - Maja Białek (Sherlockiana), Maja Margasińska (Sherlockon) and Katarzyna Kowalska (Sherlockon)  

Did Sherlock Holmes have any kind of private life besides solving crimes? If so, then Arthur Conan Doyle tended to neglect it. For years, filmmakers have been trying to fill the gaps left by the author with their own ideas about the preferences, free time, favourite dishes and drinks, and even love life of the detective. Starting with the film The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes by Billy Wilder from 1970, the panellists will guide the audience through the meanders of the many private lives of the character. 

Duration: 45' 

Maja Białek - an academic philosopher and admirer of Sherlock Holmes in all his book, film, serial and comic incarnations. For ten years, she has been running the Sherlockian blog, where she expresses her love not only for everything Sherlock Holmes-connected, but for British pop culture in general. She is also a big fan of Polish Sherlockists and she cannot imagine a year without the Sherlockon. 

Maja Margasińska - a writer, poet, theatrologist and influencer. As Facetka od Kultury [the Culture Girl], she reviews books and plays, and also interviews people of interest. She is the president of the Uwaga na Kulturę! foundation and the co-organiser of the only convention for Sherlock Holmes fans in Poland. She loves all the incarnations of the greatest detective of all time, but she has a special affection for a Russian series from 2013. 

Katarzyna Kowalska - associated full-time with the Faculty of Polish Studies at the University of Warsaw, where she organises literary meetings, Q&As with authors and book launches. She describes herself as a specialist in special and impossible tasks. She is the co-organiser of the only Polish convention for Sherlock Holmes fans, and the vice-president of the Uwaga na Kulturę! foundation. She is a big fan of the BBC's Sherlock series.


16:00 Screening of the film The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, dir. Billy Wilder; written by Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond; cast: Robert Stephens (Sherlock Holmes), Colin Blakely (Doctor Watson), Geneviève Page (Gabrielle Valladon); United Kingdom; 1970; 125'; PL subtitles 

Billy Wilder, a huge Sherlock Holmes fan, twice attempted to make a musical about the brilliant detective - unfortunately without success. In the end, he decided to do something completely different and talk about what fans of the master of deduction were also probably thinking about: what does he do when he has nothing to do? 

Wilder's answer in The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes is quite disturbing – when Sherlock Holmes has nothing to keep him occupied, he plunges into his cocaine addiction. Fortunately, this stagnation lasts only for a short time – as soon there is a knock on the detective's door. A cabman says he has just fished a beautiful woman with amnesia out of the Thames, who was holding a sodden piece of paper with the address of 221B Baker Street... 

This film, which premiered almost half a century ago, continues to entertain viewers with its subtle humour but it also intrigues with its mysterious atmosphere. It forces us to consider the question: Were there any women in the life of Sherlock Holmes, or was there only room for Dr. Watson?



11:00 "Here it is Always 1895". Featuring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce - lecture by Maja Białek (Sherlockian)  

The series of films and radio plays from the 1940s starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce occupies a unique place in the rich history of adaptations of the Sherlock Holmes stories. Until the time of Jeremy Brett (and now Benedict Cumberbatch), it was Rathbone and Bruce that shaped the popular ideas about who Holmes and Watson are and what their world looks like. This series, however, was extremely diverse and interesting in itself - combining a sentimental vision of the era of gas lanterns and horse-drawn carriages (which seemed particularly seductive in the war years) with sending Holmes to America, and even transposing him to the present and in different genres. The talk will focus on the Sherlock Holmes that Rathbone and Bruce created, and what has survived from their creations and films.

Duration: 45' 

Maja Białek - an academic philosopher and admirer of Sherlock Holmes in all his book, film, serial and comic incarnations. For ten years, she has been running the Sherlockian blog, where she expresses her love not only for everything sherlockian, but for British pop culture in general. She is also a big fan of Polish sherlockists and she cannot imagine a year without the Sherlockon.


12:00 "The Other Side of Serial Fiction" - a demonstration of forensic techniques and the collection of evidence from a crime scene (criminologists Marcin Mańczak and Jacek Cyran) 

What does the work of forensic scientists shown in numerous television series actually look like in reality? Is it really possible to identify the perpetrator by means of a scent left at the scene? Or a clump of earth, or an insect? Can you find traces of blood in a place which has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected? Or on washed clothes? With the progress of science, it is increasingly difficult to keep up with the development of modern technologies. And these recent developments are also used by law enforcement and judicial authorities.

Series showing the work of forensic investigators have enjoyed immense popularity for years, but does film fiction show the real possibilities and tools which are used by these investigative bodies? And also does fiction have an irreversible effect on the work of these technicians? The speakers will try to answer these and other questions during their show. 

Duration: 90' 

Marcin Mańczak and Jacek Cyran are lecturers at the Police School in Piła and forensic scientists with many years of experience. In their case, it is safe to say that their work is their passion and their open lectures and shows always draw large crowds.


14:00 "Phosphorising in the dark or a cynological contribution to the discussion about film adaptations of the Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle" - lecture by Magdalena Jung

What breed was the hound of the Baskervilles? How have filmmakers imagined it? The depiction of the phantom dog has changed over the years; this lecture will attempt to compare the hound from the book with the hounds from the screen. 

Duration: 45'

Magdalena Jung - an English philologist and translator, she also holds a diploma in photography. Of all the screen adaptations of Holmes, she regards the portrayal by Jeremy Brett as the best.   


15:00 Screening of The Hound of the Baskervilles

The Hound of the Baskervilles, dir. Sidney Lanfield; written by Ernest Pascal; cast: Basil Rathbone (Sherlock Holmes), Nigel Bruce (Doctor Watson), Lionel Atwill (James Mortimer), Richard Greene (Sir Henry Baskerville); USA; 1939; 80'; PL subtitles 

The classic adaptation of one of the most popular stories about the famous detective, and also the first film to bring together Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce as Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson, creating the iconic image in pop culture of the detective and his inseparable assistant which would last for decades. 

Dr. Mortimer arrives at 221B Baker Street and tells Sherlock Holmes about the strange curse of his friend and patient, Sir Charles Baskerville, who died of a heart attack in the grounds of his home. Traces of a huge dog were found nearby. Mortimer is afraid that Charles' nephew and heir – who is due to return from abroad to take possession of the property – is in danger. Is the curse cast centuries ago still a threat? Or maybe it is something (or someone) else?


Wałbrzyska 3/5, Minimax room, ground floor (behind the cafe)

Every night during the Silent Movie Festival, there will be screenings of silent films about Sherlock Holmes in the Iluzjon cinema, accompanied by some wonderful live music. Over at Wałbrzyska 3/5, meanwhile, you’ll be able to actually hear the genius detective speaking - and in many different voices!

Come and visit the Sherlock Holmes Audio Library. Just sit back on the comfortable chairs and immerse yourself in the stories about the exciting cases taken on by the greatest detective of all time, with the role of Sherlock Holmes performed by, among others, Tadeusz Łomnicki, Bronisław Pawlik and Piotr Fronczewski. You’ll be able to listen to many classic radio plays from the archives of Polish Radio, with each story introduced by a presenter known from Polish Radio Two: Joanna Szwedowska (on Saturday) and Ewa Stocka-Kalinowska (on Sunday).


11:00 "The Adventure of the Bruce-Partington Plans", dir. Wiesław Opałek and Juliusz Owidzki, 1958, 45 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Henryk Borowski 

The eponymous documents, designs for the construction of a submarine, are a closely guarded secret of the British government. After they are stolen, and some of them are found in the pocket of a murdered clerk, Sherlock Holmes is asked by the deceased’s brother, an employee of the prime minister's office, to take on the case.

12:00 "The Adventure of the Resident Patient", dir. Rena Tomaszewska, 1959, 41 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Tadeusz Łomnicki

After a series of strange events in a house on Brook Street, the employer of Dr. Percy Trevelyan, whose medical practice is based in the house, begins to fall into a strange paranoia and asks for the intervention of the famous detective.

13:00 "The Adventure of the Highgate Miracle", dir. Edward Płaczek, 1965, 40 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Mieczysław Pawlikowski 

Gloria Cabpleasure asks Sherlock Holmes to investigate her husband's attachment to an ordinary umbrella that seems to go beyond accepted norms.It soon turns out that it has something to do with 26 diamonds...

14:00 "A Case of Identity", dir. Zenon Wiktorczyk, 1966, 36 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Bronisław Pawlik

Miss Mary Sutherland’s fiancé disappears in mysterious circumstances on their wedding day. From the client's chaotic account, Holmes concludes that she has become the victim of a fraudster who took advantage of her gullibility and short sight.


11:00 "The Adventure of the Empty House", dir. Zofia Rakowiecka, 1977, 26 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Piotr Fronczewski

Inspector Lestrade, with the help of Dr. Watson, is on the trail of a dangerous gang of criminals who contributed to the death of Sherlock Holmes two years earlier. But is the great detective really dead?

12:00 "The Adventure of the Copper Beeches", dir. Zofia Rakowiecka, 1978, 30 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Piotr Fronczewski

Holmes is visited by a woman who is considering taking up an exceptionally well-paid job as a governess. Her employer seems to be a respectable gentleman, but over time the demands placed on Miss Hunter become increasingly peculiar.

13:00 "The Adventure of Shoscombe Old Place", dir. Zofia Rakowiecka, 1978, 28 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Piotr Fronczewski 

A horse trainer from a racing stable goes to Sherlock Holmes for help. It turns out that the estate manager, the widowed owner's brother who is known for his impetuosity and extravagance, has begun to behave extremely strangely.

14:00 "The Adventure of the Dancing Men", dir. Rena Tomaszewska, 1979, 37 mins, Sherlock Holmes: Piotr Fronczewski 

Sir Hilton Cubitt asks Sherlock Holmes to read an encrypted message writtenon a piece of paper which appears to be a sequence of mysterious dancing stick figures. Soon he will pay for his curiosity with his life. Will the heroes manage to stop the criminal before he commits another crime?


Translated by: Paweł Włochacz