*** Official SHERLOCK HOLMES (2009) Review Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Patrick Sun, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator

    Jun 30, 1999
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    I think I've seen too many episodes of "CSI" and "House, M.D." to be all that impressed by "Sherlock Holmes". While the chemistry between Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law was good, the film is drabby (well, it is London in the latter half of the 1800s) and dull in far too many spots, felt overly long too, then mix in Guy Ritchie's penchant for quick flashback cuts to explain Holmes' observations that cut to the truth, the film feels anachronistic at times to its detriment. Also, Rachel McAdams's character just seems adrift, not quite integrated in the film as well as she could have been. Also, the main villain, Lord Blackwood (Mark Strong) isn't all that interesting, which also robs the film of much dramatic tension.

    I give it 2.5 stars, or a grade of C+.
  2. Simon Massey

    Simon Massey Cinematographer

    Aug 9, 2001
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    Real Name:
    Simon Massey
    I caught this yesterday and really enjoyed it. I expected Robert Downey Jr to be good and he was and the chemistry between him and Jude Law was very good. I liked the way in which the film tried to show Holmes' mind working. Was worried about Guy Ritchie as I havent enjoyed much by him in the past but this was much better from him.

    It did feel like the first act of a larger story and to be more cynical it felt like a setup of a franchise. However I do think this film is a good start and I hope they get to make more.
  3. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator

    Dec 9, 1998
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    This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Sherlock Holmes". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread.

    Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning!

    If you need to discuss those type of issues then I have designated an
    Official Discussion Thread.

  4. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer

    Oct 5, 2005
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    Lee Summit, Missouri
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    Sometimes, it's hard to write a review because what you want to say is not that easily addressed in words. I've read my share of Holmes, enjoyed the concept.. and I'm always befuddled by the need of some to decide to take a character from the past and turn them into a major-action superstar.
    I joked with my wife that I would next await "Murder, She Wrote" where the character previously played by Angela Lansbury would now be played by an ass-kicking Angelina Jolie. But I digress. The problem is, the storyline as present within the film really, really folds under it's own weight. While this isn't quite "Wild, Wild West" bad, it's still a bit of an abomination of the original source, and even if you have NO knowledge of the original source material, it just isn't interesting enough.
    The villain is very ho-hum and the storyline advances with huge logical leaps that are insane to overcome. The action effects at points are flat out laughable. RDJ turns in a great performance as Holmes, really sells his part.. which is a difficult task considering his dialog is so damn goofball.

    I haven't checked the online reviews, and maybe I'm the lone "this sucks" out in the crowd, but my best advice is: save your money. This might be good discovered at home on a cheap rental, but if you're like me you'll find yourself looking at your watch more then a couple times while you wonder how goofy this thing is going to get before it ends.

    Maybe it did need a giant robot spider.

    :star: :star: / :star: :star: :star: :star: :star:
  5. Andrew M

    Andrew M Second Unit

    Oct 12, 1998
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    Saw this today here in San Francisco and thoroughly enjoyed it. Holmes is a seminal popular culture figure. And like Tarzan, Batman, Superman, Phillip Marlowe, etc. his character (and that of Watson) is robust enough to survive a wide variety of adaptions and interpretations. Downey's portrayal is no less valid than Jeremy Brett or my personal favorites, Vasily Livanov (Holmes) and Vitaly Solomin (Watson). If you're a Sherlock Holmes fan, there's more than enough in this film to keep you entertained and awaiting the upcoming sequel.
  6. todd s

    todd s Lead Actor

    Jul 8, 1999
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    I got more of a Patrick Jane on "The Mentalist" than the above shows. Where is very observant of even the most subtle thing.
  7. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

    Sep 30, 2002
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    North Hollywood, CA
    Real Name:
    Brandon Conway
    It was a good movie. A very solid 7/10. I may like it more upon subsequent viewings.


    - Good interaction and performances by Downey and Law.
    - Great set design, costume design, art direction, etc. Really captured the era and London.
    - Decent plot and execution. As someone who's read ~ half of the Holmes stories it worked very well, even if it bent towards an ending that got too large for a Holmes story (the "take over the world" aspect).
    - Nicely done set-up for a sequel; it felt organic to this story even though it was primarily there to set up the next.
    - The "analysis" skill of Holmes was done very well. The previews make it seem that Ritchie will get all 300-esque slow-mo during the action scenes, but when I saw that they were simply ways to demonstrate Holmes deductive reasoning I was pleasantly surprised at how well it worked.
    - Despite what many think, there is quite a lot of action in the short stories. Yes, not to the degree of this film, but they are often quite adventurous, and there are many moments of close-calls, chases, and fisticuffs than one would be led to believe by other film and tv adaptations.
    - I like that they went away from making Watson bumblng, rotund and dimwitted. Watson isn't these things in the stories, and is every much Holmes equal except in Holmes' superb deductive reasoning (I was glad to see his military service brought into the film). The films of the 30s/40s turned Watson into the persona most people know, and it was good to see a film not fall into that same trap.


    - McAdams doesn't hit the right notes, IMO. her scenes fall flat.
    - The film basically starts with Holmes and Watson being ready to part ways. That, to me, seems a better plot point for a sequel. I'd have liked to just see them start working together in the first film. This film almost feels like a sequel itself and that we've missed their true partnership. I understand they're building upon 100 years of popular knowledge of the characters and their relationship, but still.
    - The two "analysis" slow-mo scenes early in the film really didn't have a payoff at the end of the film. Doing it once more when they were fighting to disarm the machine would have been a good way to have such a payoff.
  8. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

    Oct 31, 1997
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    Have never read Holmes (shock!) and thoroughly enjoyed this movie. I agree with just about everything Brandon lists as a Pro. As for his cons, the only one I really noticed was McAdams' scenes not really working all that well. I don't know why it didn't, because I think she's a good actress, but for whatever reason the onscreen chemistry between her and Downey Jr. didn't really materialize or convince. Other than that, a solid 8/10 ranking from me.

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