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Saturday, 20 June 2015

Review - Mr Holmes

Mr Holmes is a British-American crime drama/mystery film directed by Bill Condon and is adapted from the book 'A Slight Trick of the Mind' by Mitch Cullen, it stars Ian McKellan as Sherlock Holmes and Laura Linney as Mrs. Munro.

Mr Holmes is about an elderly Sherlock Holmes living in Sussex with his housekeeper Mrs. Munro and her son Rodger in the late 1940's, The interesting thing about the plot is that Sherlock is losing his memory, the smartest man in the world is forgetting things, its a thing I've never seen any Sherlock book or film show before and thought they handled it very well. The film jumps around with time, with 3 different sections; the present, in which Sherlock has just returned from Japan and is trying to remember an old case of his, a few weeks ago, when he was in Japan and in the 30 years in the past, showing Sherlock's old case as he is remembering it, they juggle the 3 story-lines in a way that you always know when and where you are.



For the most part the story-line is very intriguing, Sherlock has to confront some things that he has always brushed aside in his younger days, his relationship with Mrs. Munro's son Rodger is charming, Sherlock is teaching him his detective ways, hoping he may be like him in the future, but the most interesting part is Sherlock trying to piece together his last case, the case that made him retire from detective work and move to Sussex and at first the mystery is very interesting but ultimately the case isn't as exciting as it seems and is slightly disappointing. 

The performances in the film are fantastic, Ian McKellan's portrayal of Holmes is wonderful and heartbreaking at the same time, seeing this elderly Sherlock is so sad to see, after seeing him as a young man in films, TV and the books, he is almost like a Peter Pan figure because he is always young, it is very saddening to see him aged for the first time, McKellan has to play two very different stages of Sherlock, the 63 year old and the 93 year old, McKellan plays these two perfectly, as the 63 year old, he is still the Sherlock we know and love, spry and charming and then he plays the 93 year old, who is rude, fragile and insulting. Laura Linney is also stellar as Mrs. Munro, this role doesn't work too well without Linney, the character isn't the most likable person, but thanks to Linney you understand why she isn't the most likable and you feel sorry for her. Child performances are very hit and miss in films, luckily Milo Parker, who plays Mrs. Munro's son Roger, is great, he is a very good young actor who has great chemistry on screen with McKellan and can also hold a scene with him which is saying a lot.

Mr Holmes is a wonderful performance driven film for Ian McKellan who really gets to show off his acting talents, the story is engaging and sad but unfortunately the mystery in the film is disappointing which sets the film back slightly. 

3.7/5

What did you think of the film?
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