Street-Fightin’ Holmes

Posted: May 20, 2009 in Jeff Holland, Threat Quality

Subbing for Chris today, and it’s a bit late to start on any topics, but how about we take a quick look at the trailer for the upcoming reimagining of Sherlock Holmes from Guy Ritchie and Robert Downey, Jr.?

Now then, there’s been a lot of hub-bub about how true it is to the “real” Holmes (as to the actual reality of the Holmes character, we’ve actually talked about that before).

I think it looks like a blast, keeping in mind:
A) I’m a RDJ sucker
B) I’m not a Holmes purist, and
C) With one notable exception (Swept Away – and Ritchie didn’t get his groove back until they divorced!), Guy Ritchie puts together the type of movie I generally enjoy. Are they deep? No (except for Revolver, which was probably the deepest movie Jason Statham will ever star in). Are they overly pleased with themselves? Sometimes. Do I mind? No, I like stylistic fight scenes and witty banter.

Your turn, what do you say?

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Comments
  1. Lisa says:

    YAY! Can’t wait. Looks like an absolute blast. Then again, I am the farthest thing from a Holmes purest, seeing as I’ve never read a single one.

  2. Hsiang says:

    Hoo boy, am I ever on the fence with this one. To me the ITV series Jeremy Brett captures Holmes perfectly but that would never fly in the theaters. The action in this trailer looks fantastic and yes, Holmes and Watson were no slouches when it came to the pugilistic arts. Watson was a veteran who served in Afghanistan, anyone who got out of there with all their anatomy intact was either one tough feathermocker or could run like hell.

    I think Jude Law will be great as Fightin’ Doc Watson, and Downey? Hell, don’t make me type that “reading a phone book” quip. I’m a huge fan too.
    Physically RDJ doesn’t resemble Holmes at all, way too short and lacking that aquiline nose. Adrian Brody is the spitting image of the Holmes in my head, but whatever. An amazing actor, he can do the balance between dry wit and manic genius the role requires. Seems to be leaning too far into “wacky”, I always see Holmes with a Vulcan-like reserve.

    Sigh, I dunno about the two-fisted, high-octane (whale oil?) action and the broad comedy but I think I’ll just shut up and enjoy the hell out of this flick.
    But if there are actual vampires or supernatural shenanigans I WILL CRY LIKE A HURT PUPPY. FOR WEEKS

  3. V.I.P. Referee says:

    This and “Dorian Gray” (out in the fall) are on my list, as far as “how close will they stay to the original stuff?” viewings go. Robert Downey Jr. always catches me off-guard with his abilities—somehow, I’ve often associated him with the slap-happy, bar-brawling “Russell Crowe/Colin Farell” crew, only to remember his quirky, elegant work in “Chaplin”—totally nailing CC’s strange, magical (legendary) brand of charisma. He’s never predictable.

  4. Jeff Holland says:

    @VIP: Get outta here, there’s a Dorian Gray movie coming up? Huh. Hopefully he’ll be treated a little better than in the abortion that was the “League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” movie.

    @Hsiang: I tentatively agree that an actual supernatural element would hurt – not least because they’d be launching a franchise with “Holmes vs. the supernatural” as its mission statement, and that’s just a bad idea. It’d be like if Abbott and Costello could ONLY interact with Universal monsters.

    Also, Guy Ritchie’s never done supernatural special effects before, and I’d just as soon he didn’t start with this one. I like the guy’s movies – but I don’t always trust his decision-making (see: all his Madonna-related experiences).

  5. matt says:

    I’m no Holmes purist either, but my hope is that they kept close enough to the original material that it’ll work for those seeking a good mystery movie. The action scenes look very good. Good enough for me to see the movie, anyway. I just hope they can keep a certain “panache” with Holmes, otherwise it just becomes another action movie, and that wouldn’t be fair to a Sherlock Holmes franchise. So, here’s hoping to a stately character with a little flair.

  6. threatqualitypress says:

    I am back, sorry I wasn’t around–I had to do laundry, and then certain emergencies precipitated that I lost internet access for the better part of the day.

    Anyway, let me just remind everyone that the only Sherlock Holmes book was Sherlock Holmes vs. Giant Supernatural Ghost Dogs–and revealing that the ghost dog was just a regular dog covered in phosphorescent paint isn’t something that you’d do in the trailer. The idea that this actually might be something supernatural is supposed to persist until the very end. I don’t think there’s any need to jump to conclusions, here.

    What Guy Ritchie does well, I think, is witty, gritty little crime movies, which I think is a great aesthetic to apply to Holmes. I’m not sure there’s any particular reason to preserve that stuffy Victorian aesthetic (which was an artifact of literature more than it was of the actual culture, anyway), especially because there ARE other adaptations that are like that.

    I don’t know if you remember Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee in Hound of the Baskervilles, but that’s exactly what I think of when I think of “regular” Holmes (also Jeremy Brett). Weird. Eerie. Very. Very. Slow.

  7. Amanda says:

    I’m going to commit a major crime of superficiality here and say I don’t care what they do in the movie- if RDJ is on board, I’m a fan. BRILLIANT. ALWAYS. The end.

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