DVD Review: Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows (12A)

Review by Toby Lattimore

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (12A)

The rebranding of the famous detective sees its second outing in Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows with the now increasing popular, Robert Downey Jr. (Ironman) playing the lead and ever present Jude Law as Watson.

Both abound with charisma as we are taken on a globetrotting duel against the remodelled Professor Moriarty played by the miscast Jared Harris, who seems more cobbler than academic, rough than expectantly sophisticated. The story is held up by the mysterious gypsy Madam Simza Heron, acted by the subtly powerful Noomi Rapace (Girl with a Dragon Tattoo), who introduces some relieving unpredictability to a round of samey action sequences, which have been replicated from the first film.

The director, Guy Ritchie, is a surprising choice for the film and spells out the direction this franchise is careering in. Action is top of the bill suffused with the token mathematical slow motion and lack of plot.

As the film progresses we are treated to a more and more ridiculous Sherlock Holmes and belligerent Watson. At one point Holmes pushes Watson’s wife out of a moving train into a river tens of metres below who is then rescued by the poorly envisioned Mycroft Holmes, played by a disappointingly bumbling Stephen Fry. There is very little of reality here which is what made Holmes such a master in the original story; a detective who controlled and saw through reality to understand the secrets of the criminal mind. Instead we are taken on a cheap ride and the film ends up being a mere parody of something great.