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The Blue & Gray Press | August 22, 2019

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'Holmes' A Fast-Paced Adventure

by Paulina Kosturos

Who knew Sherlock Holmes could sport a pair of ripped abs!

In Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock Holmes,” an action-packed interpretation of the classic character of the same name, audiences are treated to an array of conspiracies, fight scenes, explosions, a ginger-headed midget and spooky magic. This chaotically entertaining take on the Arthur Conan Doyle novels forces Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) and Dr. John Watson (Jude Law) to investigate a series of bizarre murders perpetrated by the notorious Lord Blackwood, who has risen from the dead. As the crime-fighting duo attempts to catch the illusive Blackwood, Holmes’ former lover (Rachel McAdams) enters the picture, working for a shady nemesis.

The on-screen Holmes ditches all refinement and embodies the role of a quick-thinking daredevil. His superior critical thinking skills match his peak physical condition. In addition to solving baffling clues, Holmes engages in bad-boy fight scenes, often calculating the physical damage he will inflict on his victims in a matter of seconds.

Aside from Holmes’ somewhat spastic personality, Holmes and Watson engage in an outrageously funny “bromance. Holmes’ hurtful comments to Watson’s fiancée and his often crazy experiments make Holmes and Watson a match made in heaven. Their onscreen bickering successfully characterizes Watson as the sensibility behind Holmes’ fast-paced demeanor.

While this humorous action film remains entertaining, please note that fans devoted to Doyle’s novels may find Holmes a hyper, child-like idiot on crack. They may categorize the plot line as juvenile and thoughtless. Consider the script a humorously dark, modern take on the novels. This movie makes the novels more appealing to a younger generation who may not be familiar with the usual sophisticated version of Holmes. Nevertheless, all audiences should keep an open mind and go spend a dollar at Cheap Seats!


  1. Heather Greider

    This is an interesting review, considering my friends and I have read the novels, and we were very pleased with it. If one has read Doyle’s mysteries, one should be used to the script being humorously dark. In his own environment Holmes is an unkempt, habitual cocaine user who loves solving mysteries more than people’s opinion of him. Though, he is very charming and polite when meeting clients, I think this is because he needs to get information. After all, he collects profiles on people who have never met him.
    We loved the fight scene because Holmes is described in “The Sign of the Four” as a great bare-knuckle fighter and in “The Adventure of the Empty House” he is an expert in baritsu, a kind of martial arts.
    Also, as I’m sure many were wondering about his clothes, and I don’t mean to quote Wikipedia, but it properly words my point: “Another common incorrect attribution is that Holmes, throughout the entire novel series, is never explicitly described as wearing a “deerstalker hat”. Holmes dons “an ear flapped travelling cap” in “The Adventure of Silver Blaze”. Sidney Paget first drew Holmes wearing the deerstalker cap and inverness cape in “The Boscombe Valley Mystery” and subsequently in several other stories.”

  2. Heather, speaking as someone who has also read most of the Holmes stories myself, while I am also personally for the humorously dark script, I do know some people that don’t like how “brutish” Holmes is in this. Of course, those people just have that image in their head of Holmes walking around with the hat and pipe, looking through some comically large magnifying glass at footsteps on the ground that we both know just isn’t who Holmes actually was.