While waiting for this movie to be released, I thought that one of two things would happen: either Ritchie and Downey Jr. would come together and make one fantastic movie based on one of the greatest fictional characters of all time, or that it I would hate it as it would be a ridiculous action movie which destroyed everything I love about Sherlock Holmes. Neither turned out to be the case.
What I got was a very entertaining and clever movie with some major flaws. What did I like about this movie? Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as the two leads is the first thing that comes to mind. Their repartee is the heart of this movie and I found myself wanting more after every scene. The dialogue here is very smart, which honestly surprised me, and the humour really quite witty. This is where most of the enjoyment of this film stems from.
The storyline itself is also put squarely on the plus side. Holmes was presented with a mystery which actually held a lot of weight and took the usual mystery story up a notch. Holmes’s struggle to find a rational solution to irrational events was a thrill to watch. The setting and atmosphere of this movie was also very well-crafted. We truly felt like we were back in late 19th century London. And setting atmosphere in movies is a big thing for me.
So what were these flaws I mentioned earlier? Well, the action pieces are the big one. They seemed to be there in order to catch the attention of adolescent audiences when they really didn’t fit into the movie that well. The film would have stood alone just fine without their existence and they felt rather derivative and out of place.
I was also hoping for a little more to Holmes’s final deductions at the end, but I suppose I was okay with what we got. The one other thing I didn’t like very much was the obvious set up for a sequel at the end. I really can’t stand when movies do this, and this one was pretty blatant. None the less, when Holmes and Watson do go on a second outing, I will be there.