Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is less than a week away from release and we couldn’t be more excited. The highly anticipated sequel to Guy Ritchie’s 2009 launch of the franchise promises the return of Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as the original crime fighting dynamic duo Holmes & Watson along with more characters from the original stories and Sherlock Holmes’ confrontation with his greatest foe: Professor Moriarty.
Here are five reasons why we can’t wait…
Stephen Fry as Mycroft Holmes
Is there anybody out there who doesn’t love Stephen Fry? (Well, aside from Poland.) In the books, Mycroft is Sherlock’s older, more observant brother. His deductive powers blow Sherlock’s out of the water, but his complacency keeps him from caring enough to actually follow up and provide proof of his conclusions, which Sherlock describes as invariably being accurate upon investigation. Fry is perfect for the role. The man is a comedic delight and watching him bounce off of Robert Downey Jr. is going to be one of the highlights of the film. Skip to 4:30 in the video below for a taste of how great their scenes together will be.
One of the best parts of the last movie was Holmes’ step-by-step plans of attack for dispatching his opponents. Everything plays out slowly in his head before we see it all in real time, perfectly displaying how Holmes is always five steps ahead. Of course, it’s something that can become irritating if overdone, but we definitely want to see a healthy dose. It would also be great to see Holmes applying that method in other situations, similar to how Sherlock from the BBC show has a virtual map of London in his mind and can instantly anticipate the route someone will take. We want to see Holmes being Holmes.
I have purchased two motion picture soundtracks in my life; one was for Sweeney Todd, the other for Sherlock Holmes. The first movie opens up with the somewhat haunting first notes of the main theme, a perfect balance of old time instruments and iconic composition from Hans Zimmer. Zimmer has worked on such films as Inception and The Dark Knight. The music for a film is extremely important and in the last installment, the songs served the movie well: making the action sequences more intense and adding whimsy to the comedic scenes.
Jared Harris as Professor Moriarty
Jared Harris is probably most notable for his role as Lane Pryce on AMC’s Mad Men. His film career is a mixed bag, but from the footage we’ve seen, it seems like he’s the perfect choice for Moriarty. Everything from the arrogance of his facial expressions to the superior tone of his voice shows he has a firm grasp of the character. We’re betting that after this movie is released, he’ll be offered a lot better roles and a lot more of them. Harris gives a great sense of menace to the part and he’s really going to shine to be a match for Downey, but we hope that the two actors will inspire great performances from each other.
Yes, we hate the term ‘bromance’ as much as the next guy, but there really isn’t a better way to describe the relationship between Holmes and Watson. In the first movie, the characters bickered like an old married couple. Downey and Law’s chemistry really makes you believe that these two have known each other for a very long time and have pretty much been through everything together. But, while they snap at each other often, it’s clear that it comes from a place of deep admiration and respect. The scene in which an awkward Holmes has difficulty admitting how relieved he is that Watson survived the explosion of the factory is one of the best moments of subtle acting between the two actors. We can’t wait to see more arguments and insults, but we also want to see solidarity. Watching them rip each other apart is definitely funny, but without the camaraderie it just makes the characters seem like bastards. Seeing these two return to the screen together is definitely what we’re most excited for.
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows has the potential to be even better than the original. Guy Ritchie gave us a fun, thrilling, thoroughly enjoyable experience two years ago and we’re hoping the franchise improves with age. Do you think it will succeed or will it fail to live up your expectations?
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows opens December 16th.