Sherlock Holmes 2

Guy Ritchie’s second foray into the world of Sherlock Holmes, in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, opens with a bang. The first question one should ask about a sequel is if it lives up to the first one (actually, the first question should be whether or not to make a sequel). A Game of Shadows definitely lives up to the first Holmes movie, not the least because of Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law.

The villain is much realer and more sinister, in that he is a respected individual with a twisted soul. Moriarty is perhaps the most dangerous type of villain–the one who doesn’t dirty his own hands, but has minions to do his will.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is perhaps even more English than the first movie, and has even more intense fight sequences. The addition of Stephen Fry as Mycroft Holmes was brilliant, as well.

It’s a wonderful movie, made better by the excellent writing. One of my favorite quotes is, “Don’t be a dingy bird, bad people do bad things because they can!” The movie is full of lines like this, quotable outside the movie, yet even better in context.

Treat yourself to a Christmas present and watch A Game of Shadows.

3 Responses

  1. Pingback : Sherlock Holmes 2 | Let's talk about movies

  2. I’ve seen this twice now and the more I think about, I’m convinced that in addition be being a ripping buddy adventure, this is a legitimately great movie.

    The music and the use of slow motion are jaring and over the top but, at least in my opinion, they serve the story perfectly. To me the music is a personification of the increasing industrialization of Holmes’ world, a very prominent plot point.

    The disconnect between Holmes’ slow-motion analysis of future action and the ultimate reality that plays out illustrate his narcissism, remind us that there’s a difference between the story we’re told or that we tell ourselves and reality (we’re inside Watson’s type writer for all but the first and last scenes of the entire film), illustrate the futility of one man trying to control the future (much to Moriarty’s profit), and provide a way to explain the actual events above the falls without actually showing them on screen.

    With the ever increasing pace of technological change and the ever present threat of asymetrical attacks the anti-industrial aspects of the film are timely.

    Moriarty is a villan for our time as well with his mix of financial shenigans and wag-the-dog war ambitions.

    We’re living through another Rooseveltian era, I’m not sure which one but Mr. Ritchie’s film has me leaning toward Teddy.

  3. I think Ritchie did an excellent job with these movies. One of my favorite aspects is how well he depicted the look of London in that era. I also thought his use of slow-motion was brilliant. I didn’t see it as showing Holmes’ narcissism, but rather as an indication of how fast his mind works. He’s able to plot things out before they happen, to the point that he even out-smarts Moriarty. And yes, Moriarty is the worst type of villain, the one who dictates to others how they must behave.
    Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack (for both movies) adds so much. I like how the dissonance of much of the music–like Holmes odd way of perceiving the world–blends together to make rousing, captivating melodies.
    Excellent job all around!

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