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'Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows' starring Robert Downey Jr. - feature trailer review

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows Directed by: Guy Ritchie Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Noomi Rapace, Jared Harris Rating: Not Yet Rated Release Date: December 16, 2011


Thoughts by TSR: I hardly even remember the story from Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes. I can recall a handful of moments and some of the broad strokes, but I’d be hard pressed to get too specific about the actual plot. Luckily, what I do remember I remember fondly. That includes the production design, the costumes, Hans Zimmer’s original score, and the chemistry between Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law. There are enough of those things present in this trailer to keep me interested, but I wouldn’t say I love it.

For one thing, this trailer features a disconcerting number of explosions, gunfire, and slow-motion shots. I realize the first film had its share of these things, but it was to a much lesser extent. Slow-motion can be used to great effect in small doses, but not if it’s simply there for the sake of looking cool. I rather liked its use during the boxing scene in the first film, because it showed us exactly how Sherlock’s mind works. The sequence in the woods that this film’s marketing has used heavily features quite a bit of slow-motion, and if it’s used arbitrarily it will grow tiresome very quickly.

While much of the trailer is reserved for grand explosions and action, Downey Jr. and Law are given a couple moments to remind me why I liked the first film as much as I did. My personal favorite is probably their back and forth at the end – which I think is a significantly better coda than the “Get what’s in your hand out of my face” ending of the previous trailer that was carried over from the first film. I do wish there was more of Jared Harris as Professor Moriarty. I won’t complain too much, though, because I’d rather they save the best scenes between Holmes and his greatest adversary for the final film.

It was obvious the sequel would be operating on a grander scale than the first film. This trailer proves it with action and by giving our heroes the task of preventing the collapse of Western civilization. If the humor between Sherlock and Watson isn’t lost behind explosions and Sherlock dressing in drag, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows could be as much fun as its predecessor. But that may be a big “if.”

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