Sunday’s Review 5: Sherlock Holmes, A game of Shadows


For this particular matter, we shall all read this review with a nice posh accent, as it regards honorable Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Now that we are all set, let’s begin. Guy Ritchie made a movie. The second of a franchise that, thanks to the original novels, might go on for a long time. And it’s not a bad thing.

Those movies have a lot of good things that I enjoyed watching, as did, I’m sure of it, lots of people. But here is my problem: Even though we find the same names, maybe some of the original lines and plots and the same original characters, I don’t see how they are Sherlock Holmes movies. I think, and maybe I’m wrong, that instead of an interpretation of an original piece, it’s more of an original piece standing on an ancient one. Sherlock Holmes 2 is a good movie and my opinion is that the only reason why it’s called Sherlock Holmes, is to give us one more argument to appreciate it. Give a popular name to a fine movie and you’ve got it all!

Maybe I’m being a little harsh since I really think that it’s a good movie and I usually am not to picky on the way directors choose to adapt a previous work. I guess I would have liked it best if it was a new character. This guy Robert Downey Jr. is playing is everything but a gentleman and he’s not the only one out of Conan Doyle’s path. Even the way he solves the case is not in anyway close to the private detective from the books. So why did he had to be called Sherlock Holmes? What does it bring to the movie? Are every british private detective supposed to be him?

When I decided to do a review about Sherlock Holmes 2, I considered doing a comparison with the BBC successful series Sherlock. Then I saw the movie and realized that it wasn’t really possible since they have nothing more than a name in common. Of course, their characters are from the same origin so they might look alike, but the treatment of Conan Doyle’s books is so different that a parallel would be useless to define one work or the other.

Anyway, the series as well as the movies ask this question about all art: Why do we feel the need to take up old pieces? Is it a way to get some kind of quality label or deal with trust issues with the producers? I don’t really have an answer and will leave you with this to think about.  



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