Thursday, August 8, 2013

Movie Review: Sherlock Holmes--A Game of Shadows

 Almost four years ago, I wrote a movie review about Sherlock Holmes a few days after it opened on the big screen.
I'm afraid I'm not so timely with my review of the sequel Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
After a day of home consolidation projects I finally tore off the cellophane to the DVD and settled down on the sofa with Janet to watch this Sherlockian sequel.
Overall, the movie got mixed reviews, earning 3-ish out of 4 stars (or 7-ish out of 10) and didn't earn as much money as the original, but was still considered a success.
I enjoyed it and agreed with the critical assessments of the film.  It's a good action-investigative flick with a touch of steampunk.  The story is loosely based on The Final Problem by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Originally, Professor Moriarty was merely a plot device for Doyle to kill-off Holmes.  Since then, writers have extended and deepened the misdeeds of the "Napoleon of Crime."  In A Game of Shadows, Moriarty's diabolical plan is to start a world war by assassinating an ambassador attending a summit meeting--to be convened at Reichenbach Falls.
Basically, Moriarty is like a steampunk version of Darth Sidious, instigating a war in order to profit from it.  Not only can the story's plot be compared to the Star Wars prequels, but to actual history.  The Great War engulfed the planet about 23 years after A Game of Shadows takes place. 
And the spark that ignited the flame?
(On a personal note:  I spent three months in Sarajevo while I was on active-duty and often drove by The Latin Bridge.  Unfortunately, I never had a chance to stop and take pictures).
The film alludes to the then-impending conflict during the Holmes-Moriarty showdown, when Moriarty tells Holmes that an all-out war is inevitable.
While this Victorian "countdown to Armageddon" may not have the pulse-pounding tension the producers were hoping for, it's still interesting to see the plot unfold and how the writers tied it in with Doyle's original work. 
I'm sorry I missed seeing the grit and grandeur A Game of Shadows on the big screen.

No comments: