Sherlock Holmes (2009), the Robert Downey Jr. movie, was the extravaganza as billed in the trailer. It was a lot of fun but there was nothing memorable about it, nothing of lasting value. These days in the movies a hero’s recovery from spectacular explosions, the skinny little hero guy beating the big bad guy after being totally battered himself, the horrible harlot at the beginning having a heart of gold at the end, the dead villain cleverly avoiding actually being dead are all part of the standard-cliché-ho-hum matinée thriller junk style of movie. I hoped for more! The sets were wonderful and a lot of effort was made to make Sherlock’s Victorian London look authentic. The final combat was shot on the almost finished Tower Bridge, seen here below under construction, which dates the action to 1892. It is there we see Professor Moriarty’s current frontman Lord Blackwood hanging, supposedly dead, from the span just where the flapping flag is seen in the picture below.
The movie was beautifully shot in so many ways but was ruined for me by unnecessary flaws like the director making the actors talk faster than any human being I ever met, and by cutting away from completed thoughts and overlaying them with new dialogue before any human mind has the ability to comprehend them. The dialogue was often slurred and very difficult to hear and follow and may have been filled with more subtle innuendos than anyone but the screen play editor could ever comprehend on first hearing of the speeches.
The concluding scene is a recap of all of the various tricks that had been played upon the screen characters, and upon the audience. They were recapped so we could supposedly understand them. It becomes apparent that we were made into dupes and thus fools and it apparent that the movie viewers were expected to see the movie again so we could understand this rubbish and become consummate fools.
Everything about the movie is spectacular except the directing, editing, speeches, terrible shadow detail quality and muddy sound quality and total lack of comprehensible motivations for any of the characters. It’s a perfect movie for a Saturday matinée.