Sunday, 22 January 2012

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

The other night, my boyfriend and I went to see Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. Having adored the first one beyond words, I was somewhat worried that this would not match up to the first one. Well, I didn't love it quite as much, after all, it didn't have Lord Blackwood in it, but it was still an excellent movie and I did unreservedly love it!

Robert Downey Jnr. accurately captures the enigmatic and rather fey personality of Sherlock Holmes perfectly. A man whose mind moves so much faster than that of those around him that he is a mystery in and of himself.  Ritchie showed this well by showing how Holmes notices the tiniest elements throughout the movie that support his conclusions at the end, things the viewer does not usually pick up.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself was a man of considerable intellect and scientific bent. Observations and ideas in his stories show this beyond a doubt. His clever plot twists in the Sherlock Holmes stories, the explanation for the cut off prehistoric world in The Lost World (which I am currently reading), all these show an intense interest in scientific fact and an ingenious imagination. I think Conan Doyle would have appreciated how Ritchie rewove elements of his stories and the technologies he displayed within the movie, such as the early form of the guns we have nowadays in which you can fit several bullets in the chamber. I was also delighted to see that Holmes drove an electric brougham, which I had seen mention of in The Lost World the other day. A post on these delightful contrivances is soon to follow.

I also enjoyed the little tongue in cheek moments, such as the ending, which tips its hat to the original story progression, with Conan Doyle ending the series and then starting it again. I don't want to give it away. The bit where Holmes didn't want to ride the horse was also amusing to me, as I had learned from watching Stephen Fry in America (TV series) that Fry (who plays Holmes' brother Mycroft) has similar feelings about horses. Liking them from far away, but not liking to ride them, apparently.

The Hans Zimmer soundtrack is also excellent and part of what makes the movie so engaging.

All in all, it was a delightful movie, and if you have not already seen it I do recommend it.

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