Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Director: Guy Ritchie
Stars: Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law

It's funny, I totally enjoyed the movie when I saw it (this past Saturday) but now that I'm finally sitting down to write about it...nothing is coming to me.  I liked Downey and Law a lot and get such a kick out of them together.  I almost always like Ritchie (he's had a misstep or two but I don't hold them against him) as a director so that's good.  I adore the two new males: Jared Harris as Holmes' foe, Moriarty and Stephen Fry as Holmes' brother (and sometimes foe), Mycroft.  Noomi Rapace, of the original Girl With A Dragon Tattoo fame, was ok.  I think once she's a bit more comfortable with English she'll be more comfortable in English-speaking roles (call it the Penelope Cruz effect).  But mostly the further I get from the movie the less I have to say about it overall.  It was pure escapist fun but there were issues.  I think I liked it better than the first one.  I think the guys have more of a rhythm together.  I think Stephen Fry should always be nude in a movie.

I'd get into the story but there isn't much of one.  Sherlock finds himself in a game of wits with another great English mind, Professor Moriarty.  They go back and forth and back and forth.  Things happen.  People get shot or flung out of trains.  Whatever, you don't go see these movies for the story (which would make Sir Arthur Conan Doyle roll in his grave).  It's weird to think that a movie about the great Sherlock Holmes is an action movie.  Weird and depressing.

Anywhoodle, the acting was fun.  Downey is a force and I'm so glad he's at the top of his game in these.  I've always had a soft spot for Law and wish I didn't know anything about his personal life. As I said, I really, really like Jared Harris.  He's probably number one on my favorite sexy-ugly actor list.  He camped it up a bit at times but he's got such style and presence.  Fry was awesome as the elder Holmes.  But then Stephen Fry is always awesome.  The women were fine.  They're really secondary to the Holmes/Watson relationship.  Ok, anyone and anything are really secondary to that relationship.

As for the directing, I think it didn't help that we were sitting in the front half of the theater.  We were towards the middle but still in the front half.  It was shot pretty tight and might have looked better if I had been a few rows back.  The action and fight scenes were fun.  I get tired of slow-mo, especially in the middle of a fight scene, but the use of it in this was kind of fun.  Fun and informative actually.  You get to see the inside of a gun when it fires and that was cool.  You get to see bullets tear through clothes and cannon balls rip through trees.  There's a fun chase through the woods which was worth the price of admission.

Also... IT WASN'T IN 3D!!!  Yay!

Want a review rooted in more reality?  Check out what Tracy had to say over at the Examiner.

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