Sherlock Holmes

2009-12-30 11:43
 
Sherlock Holmes

What it's about:


As the film opens, Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) and Watson (Jude Law) have apprehended the murderous cult leader Lord Blackwood (Mark Strong), who promises he will return from the dead and exact his revenge even as he is being led to the gallows. It isn't long before our super-sleuth and his associate are hot on the trail of a new menace that threatens the country. But if it is Blackwood returned from the grave, how did he cheat death? And what terrible crime is he planning?

What we thought:

Robert Downey Jr. is a great actor. Unfortunately the better he is, the worse he makes Jude "The Bore" Law look - though Law is virtually typecast as Holmes’ stuffy English gentleman buddy, he manages to make a role in which the comedy depends on being dull utterly unfunny.

Guy Ritchie’s usual cluttered direction is OK on a small budget, with a quirky script and talented British actors. But combined with overly long action sequences and effects, tunnels of flame, and drawn-out street scenes, his good taste makes about as much sense as an antique table in the middle of an apartment furnished from Morkels.

The dark and arty lighting seems promising at first, but Iron Man did it better. Clever, immersive techniques use sound and slow-mo to take you inside Holmes’ mind, breaking down his thoughts to expose his strategy and the working of his legendary instincts.

Unfortunately, the last thing any action fan really wants is for the pace of the plot to slow, and the last thing any thriller fan wants to know is the secret to a character’s superpowers. Very clever, Guy. Have a Noddy badge. 

The production values and scenery really are great, and with a bit of brutal editing, this could have been a fun popcorn flick. But the two-hour running time feels like three, and the plot has one curve too many - nothing sharp enough to be called a "twist".

This is one of those movies you look forward to, which eventually disappoints you. It’s probably worth hiring on a rainy DVD day, but there are much better things on circuit right now, and much better Downey Jr. movies. It’s really very hard to see why this is the one that earned him a recent Golden Globe nomination.


Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr. co-star in Guy Ritchie’s tediously overblown historical drama. The real mystery: why anyone in their right mind would let Guy Ritchie make a movie this bad?

Dean 2010/01/01 9:37 PM
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Disagree with this completely. It's well written, a realy good ending and mostly amusing. Don't listen to this, go watch it, it's wicked.
V. Zela 2010/01/02 12:12 PM
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Too elementary
LF 2010/01/02 12:12 PM
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Why not rather get the *real* sherlock homes book and read stories there. Firstly its better for your mind, its more fun and lasts longer then a movie. And its the original un-hollywooded (for lack of a better term) spin off that runs the name into the gutter. Do yourself a favour and read the real homes stories...
Zirrel 2010/01/02 12:24 PM
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@LF its Holmes as for un-hollywooded isn't it an English production
David 2010/01/02 2:21 PM
Totally agree with Dean, watch it!!!
Matt 2010/01/02 2:26 PM
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I totally disagree with this review. I am know amongst my friends to be a heavy movie critic but I have to say I really enjoyed Sherlock Homes. It was different to many of Guy Richies films but contained some very unique aspects. It has its fair share of humor and action and is very enjoyable to watch.
Solrakkant 2010/01/02 3:27 PM
Crap review... The movie was very good, go and check it out yourself. Action, good story line, good acting. Remember, SH was never intended to be a comedy... Cannot wait for the sequel!
Gerhard 2010/01/02 7:34 PM
It's an entertaining movie. Watch it. This reviewer probably liked avatar.
Erin 2010/01/02 8:32 PM
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Good Movie but it got a bit long winded, would have liked to have seen more of the 1 on 1 fight scenes.
Alta 2010/01/02 9:09 PM
Have to disagree with the reviewer. This movie was a lot of fun and both RDJ and Jude Law did very well in their roles. With many funny moments (That mostly didnt strive to appeal to the lowest common denominator) and good action scenes it was a great cinematic experience. I personally rate it a solid 7/10.
Clint 2010/01/03 12:30 AM
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Crap! What is this reviewer smoking!? I loved this film... one of the best films I've seen. Definitely worth a watch... read a PROPER review by the SA film expert here: http://www.ratherronge.co.za/html/sub_content.aspx?reviewid=1443
doogleman 2010/01/03 10:10 AM
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one of the worst remakes I have seen for a long time agree with the reviewer dissapointing
Dawid 2010/01/03 10:56 AM
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Rotten review....please fire the reviewer :) Rather take a look at http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/sherlock_holmes_2009/ and http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0988045/
JP 2010/01/03 11:36 AM
reviewer.....Wake up please...?? This movie was absolutely excellent, really enjoyed it. Well done Guy Rithcie!
Bob 2010/01/03 3:41 PM
Was a great movie, don't be jaded by this very tacky review.
Mike 2010/01/03 7:10 PM
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Doogleman... this is definitely not a remake as far as I know. I thought the movie was awesome. Have to see it for yourselves...
Observer 2010/01/03 7:13 PM
Really dull review. How do people with such shallow focus become reviewers? I found this incarnation of Sherlock Holmes thoroughly entertaining. The dialogue is engaging and witty, the atmosphere of late 19th-century London is grimy and gritty and believable, and the CGI is seamless. The story movies quickly and the characters are compelling. I don't usually see a movie twice at the cinema but I'm going back to see this again tonight. Can't wait for the sequel.
Craai 2010/01/03 7:28 PM
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Disagree with the review as well. Thought it was quite an original take on Sherlock Holmes, and written. Fire the reviewer please. @ Doogleman - What would be the film this is a remake of? You seem to be the only one aware of the "fact" that this is a remake
Adriaan Pelzer 2010/01/03 7:34 PM
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Jean, Unfortunately I think you've been expecting the wrong kind of movie. Maybe a typical Guy Ritchie movie, or perhaps a typical action movie? (both of which is what I dreaded when going to see it) The key lies in expecting a good Sherlock Holmes movie. This was a brilliant SH movie. Do not compare it with Iron Man. It's a different kind of movie. As for giving the key to Holmes' logic - that's the whole point! That's entirely what made the original Strand magazine articles so popular - the fact that it was part super sleuth fiction, part science lab demonstration, part logic riddle solution ... which I always found fantastic, and I'm very glad that Guy Ritchie did homage to this aspect of Sherlock Holmes. Each to his own, but I thought the movie was great, and I'm very glad that Guy Ritchie managed to step out of his own skin enough to make this a masterpiece without putting too much of his own fingerprint on it.
Andriette 2010/01/04 7:07 AM
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Jean, I must disagree with you. I loved this movie, fast paced with lots of action and I would recommend it to anyone. Maybe you got confused with SH and a boring movie like Inglorious Basterds.
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