Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock Holmes” was a great movie. It had action, adventure, laughs with a few scares thrown in too. The great thing with it is how it ended with anything being possible for the inevitable sequel. The filmmakers have said as much anyway, but I would have Holmes and Watson travel a little further afield for parts of the next film.
There is a danger, though. Too far away from Holmes’ area of operations, London, and it may begin to not feel like a Sherlock Holmes film anymore. The sights, sounds and … er smells of Victorian England are as much a part of Holmes’ life as Watson and Baker Street. But a little journeying for Holmes and his faithful companion will do them the world of good. But even when they return to London, let’s have some sunshine! I know you Americans think all it does is rain over here in Blighty, but we do sometimes have a bit of sun — and going by the first film, it looks like Sherlock and Co. could do with some.
Even though the story ended with *spoiler* the revelation of Holmes’ arch nemesis Professor Moriarty stealing a part of Blackwood’s machine for his own nefarious plans, the sequel does not have to necessarily pick straight up from that point. I certainly want Holmes to be straight on the tail of Moriarty, but I don’t think Moriarty should play the main bad guy in the sequel either. If the professor becomes the main threat for the entire film, people will come away dissatisfied that Holmes hasn’t caught him by the end of it. And we certainly don’t want Moriarty’s story over by the second film. But who could possibly play Holmes equal? Who could fill Moriarty’s shoes? It would have to be someone on a physical as well as intellectual level with the Baker Street detective. I’m thinking of somebody who could command a real presence when on the screen but could also realistically slip silently into the background when required. I’m thinking Hugh Jackman, Liam Neeson or maybe even Johnny Depp if we want to think outside the box a little. *spoiler*
And can we not always have Victorian-based action centred around cults and secret societies? With dodgy Stonemason activities in the Jack The Ripper flick “From Hell” to Lord Blackwood’s Dark Arts worshipers in “Sherlock Holmes,” you’d think all they did all day in Victorian London was draw pentagrams on the floor and sacrifice virgins. No, this time round let us see Holmes face something a little less “devilish.”
A great source of enjoyment from the first film was the banter between Robert Downey Jr.’s Holmes and Jude Law’s Doctor John Watson. Although on the surface, Law’s put-upon doctor seemed to be the straight man to RDJ’s joker, both brought a level of joker and straight man to their opposite’s role in each particular scene when required. A delicate, and well struck, balance. I want to see more of this for the sequel. However, it should not become too over the top or clichéd like many Hollywood double acts eventually fall victim to — I’m looking at you Riggs and Murtagh.
And one more thing, if I was making “Sherlock Holmes 2,” I’d get RDJ to work on that accent. Whilst not Dick Van Dyke-awful, it’s distracting. If the filmmakers can get that lot right, the rest should be … elementary.
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