movies: Sherlock Holmes

December 28, 2009

The big Christmas movie this year, opening on boxing day, is Guy Ritchie‘s take on Sherlock Holmes. I’m not a big fan of Guy Ritchie, agreeing with the majority of the public by thinking that Lock, Stock… was good, Snatch was OK but more of the same and after that he hasn’t done anything worth watching.

Well Sherlock Holmes has certainly had a lot of publicity and big release.  This movie is far from your traditional take on the Holmes character, method or plot!  Here we meet two men of action not afraid to take on all foes with fists, sword-sticks and guns.  The set piece scenes in period London are good as you would expect, the action sequences are explosive but, for me, this fails in two major ways – the plot and the plot.

Firstly the plot is just too plodding, taking for ever to cover any ground at all.  Secondly it just isn’t clever enough to be a Sherlock Holmes story.  The whole point of Sherlock Holmes is to solve difficult problems by clever deductive reasoning… not here.  The only times we see his ‘brilliant’ mind is when he is figuring out how to fight someone or in flashbacks to explain what happened – I can’t remember any forward deductions that drove the plot.

So, if you are looking for a period set action, buddy-cop movie then this might work it certainly isn’t a who-done-it because the plot just doesn’t go that way.  That said it is a reasonably enjoyable romp but not much more.