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Movie Review of Sherlock Holmes Directed by Guy Ritchie and Starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law 2009-12-24 11:42:15

Sherlock Holmes: Action-Packed Bromance

Forgive my use of the overused term "bromance" in my title — it's been bandied about quite a lot this year to describe buddy films. There have been many, but few have had what Sherlock Holmes has: two male leads who really have chemistry.

Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law play legendary detective Holmes and his sidekick Dr. Watson in the stylish action comedy from director Guy Ritchie. Ritchie's name is markedly underused in the film's ad campaign, and it's sort of appropriate: gone is the explicit language and sexuality I expected from the gritty filmmaker, best known for Snatch and Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels. That doesn't mean that it's diluted, however; what Ritchie employs is his knack for cool-looking action and clever, funny dialogue. This makes for a movie with mass appeal and allows you to focus on what the film is really about: Holmes and Watson's relationship.

To hear the rest of what I thought of the movie, just

.

The 1800s London setting is dark and dreary, and the central case — a supernatural mystery involving a villain named Lord Blackwood — follows suit. Robert Downey Jr.'s face appears tired and haggard but like the case, it's is only a facade. Gray as it is, the movie is really full of fun and lightness. The two lead actors bring such charisma to each of their roles; I was expecting it from the always-wry Downey Jr., but Jude Law caught me off guard. His Watson is jaded and has grown weary of Holmes's antics, but Law is a captivating delight in what could have been a boring role.

Rachel McAdams surfaces as Holmes former love and current nemesis, but she and RDJ have far less chemistry than he does with his male counterpart. That could be because we get almost no romance from Ritchie, who either realized he didn't need it or forgot about it while he was editing in fast-paced cuts and slick flashbacks. Not that I didn't love those, but the trademark techniques become overused in some parts.

My only real complaint is the actual plot — it's like Ritchie has so many other elements of the movie he wanted to get right (the casting, the look) that he overlooked the importance of a compelling mystery. This isn't any old fictional detective, this is Sherlock Holmes. The case Holmes must solve is at first frustrating because it appears to deal with magic, rendering Holmes's renowned logic unnecessary. Then, when his logic prevails and he cracks the case, it's frustrating that the story isn't smarter.

But, the fact that a disappointing plot couldn't ruin the fun for me says a lot about the movie — everything else is incredibly entertaining. The action sequences are the best part, but what's even more awesome is that they compete with the witty dialogue, which competes with the acting which . . . oh, you get it.


Photos courtesy of Warner Bros.

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qtpie qtpie 6 years
Love RDJ and Jude Law together, they have great chemistry, and they're so charismatic. Really fun movie.
mediaddict000 mediaddict000 6 years
Yeah, I just saw it, and it might just be my favorite movie of 2009. RDJ rocked the British accent, and Jude Law was awesome. Rachel McAdams was amazing too. So sexy.
sofi sofi 6 years
Just saw it- very good. RDJ and Jude Law are both great and work well together. Story isn't bad and the action is good and not too over the top. Love RDJ- great casting here.
figurine figurine 6 years
I'm so looking forward to seeing this one. :)
BlackKitty BlackKitty 6 years
I just saw it today, and I was very pleased. The trailer did not appeal to me, but I heard great things about it. My only complaint was that Rachel McAdams was not fully utilized. I was hoping for a little bit more back story.
eastcoastgirl eastcoastgirl 6 years
I :love: Robert Downey J.R!!! I am so glad he is back!!
eastcoastgirl eastcoastgirl 6 years
I :love: Robert Downey J.R!!! I am so glad he is back!!
PinkNC PinkNC 6 years
I really want to see this movie. I like Robert Downey. Hopefully it's not too bad.
ashleyheatherr ashleyheatherr 6 years
This honestly dosen't look that great....I've seen the commercial 1,000 times yesterday...
lovekailua lovekailua 6 years
I enjoyed it a LOT! I definitely see lilzee's point though...but I just loved this; it was so entertaining and stunning (sets, costumes etc).
myfairlady93 myfairlady93 6 years
I saw it last night too, and I thought it was a really fun and entertaining movie. RDJ and Jude Law were perfect together and I LOVED the music in it.
ilanac13 ilanac13 6 years
we saw this movie last night and i actually really enjoyed it :) i think that there's a good chemistry between RDJ and JL - and i can't wait to see what they do in a sequel (assuming that they make one really soon and they use the same cast).
ilanac13 ilanac13 6 years
we saw this movie last night and i actually really enjoyed it :) i think that there's a good chemistry between RDJ and JL - and i can't wait to see what they do in a sequel (assuming that they make one really soon and they use the same cast).
juliarose23 juliarose23 6 years
I saw this movie a few days ago at a premiere screening, and I loved it. I was so distracted by the action, sets, characters, and costumes that I completely forgot there was supposed to be a storyline. I wasn't too bothered by the plot, and still found it very entertaining.
JAFederer12 JAFederer12 6 years
I really want to see this movie. I saw Jude Law's appereance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon... it was hilarious.
lizlee89 lizlee89 6 years
I am just so frustrated that a properly dark, cynical movie adaptation of Sherlock Holmes has not been made. The Basil Rathbone (as Holmes) are great, and this looks good; but Sherlock Holmes stories are dark mysteries that focus very much on the darkness of humanity. I was so hoping when I heard about this project that it would be akin to From Hell; the Johnny Depp movie about Jack the Ripper which was very dark. I just don't know if I will be able to get past the overt campiness despite the fact that I love the cast and anything Guy Ritchie touches...
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