A Game of Shadows
Directed by Guy Ritchie
Rated PG-13 For Holmes Awesomeness
Movie Summary: Sherlock Holmes and his sidekick Dr. Watson join forces to outwit and bring down their fiercest adversary, Professor Moriarty.
My Review: If it ain't broke, don't fix it. This is exactly what Guy Ritchie has subscribed to in his sequel film to the Sherlock Holmes saga. But, I think it works and actually, A Game of Shadows might be better than the first.
I won't give spoilers but let's just say that Ritchie knew exactly what I adored about the first film and hated as well. No Rachel McAdams! And, the addition of Noomi Rapace as Madam Simza Heron was a nice touch. Being a true "Girl With a Dragon Tattoo", Swedish-version-will-always-be-the-best-version lover; it was nice to see her included in this cast. I also love Stephen Fry (V for Vendetta) as Holmes's brother. Great choice of actors this time around.
But, moving beyond... The film pretty much delivers throughout the entire 129 minutes, even down to the last five minutes. It is literally flawless. The infamous stop action sequences are back and amplified by a thousand percent! Though I thought I would tire of the "calculated fight" scenes, Ritchie found a way to bring them back because let's face it, Holmes is autistic (just saying) and seems to excel at visually accounting every detail before it even happens. But this time, there's a slight twist to those scenes which keep you from getting bored and I appreciated the attempt at keeping what worked so well in the first film, while finding ways to present it in a fresher more interesting way.
I have to admit with the plot revolving around an eminent World War, I found the story line more fascinating this time around too. Plus, Ritchie wasted no time with a love interest for Holmes (thank you). Straight action, witty dialogue, awesome fight scenes and a great ending. It is truly a solid film, through and through.
Also, one of my favorite scenes involved alcohol, bachelor party and a church. For me, Jude Law really excelled this time around and his scenes were just as hilarious and entertaining as Robert Downey Jr. I kind of love Dr. Watson, is that weird?
Overall, I say go see it. If you loved the first movie, you'll LOVE the second! Plus, Hawaii folks can utilize reserved seating at Consolidated Ward too! Makes dinner and a movie, easy peasy.
Cast and Credit:
Directed by Guy Ritchie
Robert Downey Jr. - Sherlock Holmes
Jude Law - Dr. Watson
Noomi Rapace - Madam Simza Heron
Jared Harris - Professor James Moriarty
Kelly Reilly - Mary Watson
Stephen Fry - Mycroft Holmes
Also, if you love everything Sherlock Holmes, there is a kick ass essay on the beloved character over at The Awl, Sherlock Holmes and The Adventure of the Impudent Scholars.
Excerpt: "Doyle famously tried to kill Holmes off himself, considering the stories to be a fatuous distraction from his more serious historical fiction and writing on spiritualism. When Doyle had Holmes pitched off the edge of Reichenbach Falls to certain doom, the streets of London filled with men in black armbands, demanding a revocation of the deadly deed. Nine years later, Doyle finally and begrudgingly acquiesced, reanimating Holmes in “The Adventure of the Empty House”. The Holmes stories continued for another 24 years—cases were still being "uncovered" even after the great detective had been retired to a bee farm in the Sussex Downs."
It never ceases to amaze me how much we succumb to cinema and literature. I must admit, I am guilty.