The Great Mouse Detective

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The Great Mouse Detective is a 1986 animated film by Walt Disney Pictures, based loosely on the Basil of Baker Street books by Eve Titus. The film is also known as Basil the Great Mouse Detective in the UK and Basil Mouse, Master Detective in Norway and Sweden.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.

The film takes place in London, England in the year 1897. Dr. David Q. Dawson, recently returned from military service in Afghanistan, comes across Olivia Flaversham, a cute, young and pretty 8 year old mouse who is seeking the service of Basil of Baker Street. Dawson agrees to escort Olivia to Basil's home in Baker Street, where both of them are welcomed in by Basil's housekeeper, Mrs. Judson.

Basil eventually arrives, but is too distracted by an experiment, which promptly fails, to pay any attention to his guests. However, when Olivia explains that her father, Hiram Flaversham, has been kidnapped by a peg-legged bat, Basil suddenly takes interest, pointing out that the kidnapper is a bat named Fidget, who works for Basil's arch-nemesis Professor Ratigan.

After listening to Olivia's story, Basil agrees to take on the case. Fidget briefly attempts to kidnap Olivia from Basil's home, but flees after being discovered. Enlisting the aid of Toby, the pet bloodhound of the human Sherlock Holmes, they track Fidget to a toyshop, where several clockwork mechanisms have been stolen from the toys, and the uniforms of toy soldiers removed. Fidget, disguised as a baby boy doll (while Olivia fells in love with him), successfully kidnaps Olivia, and makes good his escape. However, he accidentally drops a list given to him by Ratigan, allowing Basil and Dawson to trace Ratigan's hideout.

After finding traces of coal dust from a sewer lamp on the paper, and destroying the list to use in a complicated process, Basil deduces that he and Dawson must look for a seedy tavern located at the only spot where the sewers connect to the River Thames. Disguised as ruffians, Basil and Dawson both enter, watched by the tavern's violent patrons, who are pacified by a risque dance number performed by the beautiful Miss Kitty Mouse. Dawson, whose drink has been drugged, joins in, receiving a kiss on either cheek, before collapsing drunkenly on the pianist, and starting a barfight. As the fight ensues, Basil collects a now-sober Dawson, and spots Fidget at the bar, and they follow him down into the sewers.

Basil and Dawson emerge in Ratigan's hideout, only to discover that Ratigan, who knew that Fidget had lost the list, had set a trap for them and knew all along that Basil would be coming after him. Ratigan leaves both of them in a Rube Goldberg-style execution chamber, as he flies off in a dirigible to Buckingham Palace, along with a robotic version of the Mouse Queen that Flaversham has constructed from the clockwork mechanisms stolen from the toyshop, which Ratigan intends to use to become ruler of the British Empire.

After an inspiration by Dawson, Basil triggers the execution chamber early, causing it to malfunction and allowing them to escape unscathed. They race to the palace and thwart Ratigan's plans. In the ensuing chaos, Ratigan kidnaps Olivia and attempts to escape in his dirigible. Basil, Dawson and Flaversham follow in a hot-air balloon constructed from small helium balloons and a Union Jack. Both chase one another into Big Ben, where Basil and Ratigan engage in a final duel on Big Ben's clockface.


  • Barrie Ingham - Basil of Baker Street / Bartholomew
  • Val Bettin - Dr. David Q. Dawson / Thug
  • Vincent Price - Professor Ratigan
  • Susanne Pollatschek - Olivia Flaversham
  • Candy Candido - Fidget
  • Alan Young - Hiram Flaversham
  • Eve Brenner - Queen Mousetoria
  • Frank Welker - Felicia
  • Diana Chesney - Mrs. Judson
  • Melissa Manchester - Miss Kitty Mouse (uncreditted)
  • Shani Wallis - Lady Mouse
  • Ellen Fitzhugh - Barmaid
  • Basil Rathbone - Sherlock Holmes (uncreditted)
  • Laurie Main - Dr. Watson (uncreditted)

External links[edit]