Sherlock Holmes (2009)

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Not classic by any means but sometimes current films merit our mention. Last year’s release of Sherlock Holmes came with mixed emotions. The previews seemed to push the action side of the picture, where this viewer would prefer something more….sedate. Something reminiscent of Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce. Surely Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law could not compare to the great duo.

Well as they say anything is possible. Downey, whose talents have never been in question gives a masterful performance. Thankfully he appears to have moved beyond his own personal addictions. And Jude Law, himself no stranger to tabloid headlines, at least manages to be tolerable.

It is interesting in that the roles we historically associate with Holmes and Watson are a bit reversed. Watson appears the stable and stolid one here with his own great powers of deduction. Holmes is rather lazy and indolent- perhaps even a bit crazy- with moments of sheer mental brilliance.

And the action pieces are both well done and work well in the context of the story. This isn’t Rambo Holmes as the previews intimated. The picture is visually quite good. We see the filth and dirt of Victorian London, with hints of future greatness- the London Bridge is under construction here. The atmosphere is dark, subdued, and dirty.

It is ironic that the goal of the evil cabal is to reclaim the glory of the Empire, namely by retaking the 13 Colonies. And this at a time in history when England still had a sizeable empire – namely India.

And of course with a gross of $200M as of now we are assured of a sequel.

Highly recommended.

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