Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows Reviews

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March 1, 2016
When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?

Director Guy Ritchie's unique re-envisaging of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional detective Sherlock Holmes has been a point of contestation for critics since its first 2009 instalment.

Cynically criticised for breaking the character down to match the fad of easily digestible style of oddball similar to that of TV's Dr. House from House, Sheldon Copper of Big Bang Theory, Patrick Jane of The Mentalist, and Dr. Cal Lightman from Lie to me. Holmes is more of an eccentric and socially inept character with only a shade of his former brilliance; I however, disagree.

Although this may not be as it ought to follow the original image, American Robert Downey Jr. makes it work, and well. Teamed with a strong and more commanding Dr. Watson (Jude Law); who sadly often is portrayed as the tag along buffoon; the two have a wonderful and compelling chemistry even if the story is left wanting.

After a series of anarchist bombings across Europe, consultant detective Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) follows the faint but distinct scent of a plot masterminded by his arch enemy Professor Moriarty (Jarred Harris).

Uncovering his plan to buy up the monopoly on weapons manufacturing companies, the ruthless Moriarty; aided by a group of rebels, plans to incite the already tittering Europe into war and make a profitable fortune.

Utilizing his unique powers of deduction, Holmes begins to unravel Moriarty's nefarious scheme after intercepting a letter left by his lady love Irene Adler (Rachel McAdams) after her murder by the professor.

Following the clues to an underground gentlemen's club, Sherlock and his brother, Mycroft Holmes (Stephen Fry) are in luck as it times perfectly with the hosting of his faithful confidants Dr. Watson's all but forgotten bachelor party.

Whilst Watson and Mycroft indulge in the frivolity, Holmes hunt leads him to the in-house novelty act, a Gypsy fortune teller Sim (Noomi Rapace) who mysteriously knows a lot more than she's willing to tell.

The night inevitably disintegrates into yet another chapter of Holmes' mishaps of violence and mayhem and the poor Watson barely makes it to his wedding on time or the train to his honeymoon in Brighton. Time with is new bride Mary (Kelly Reilly) is disturbed when bandits attack and a worrisomely disguised Holmes comes to their aid.

Holmes throws Mary from the train for her safety, but only so he is free to commandeer Watson for himself. Tracking the fleeing Sim across to the continent, they uncover her connection to Moriarty's plan and employ her help. However, Morirty's appears to always be one step ahead and if successful, will change the course of history. But Holmes can always find a way to exploit a perfect plan, even if it is his own.

With locations under the Eiffel tower, the sensational Paris Opera house and breathtaking wintery Swiss Alps; an element of gravity is added to the 1890's set as they act as a major character in their own right for the series.

The stylized slow-motion, pre-visualization of Holmes' upcoming fisticuffs is also back, aiding in not only seeing the action, but adds to the understanding of exactly just how precisely his mind works. This technique is applied to another scene where a monster automatic weapon known as Hansel demolishes a forest in moments leaving complete destruction in its wake, but sadly it doesn't really fit as the premise is previously implied to be specific to Holmes mind.

The Verdict: A wonderfully light jaunt into a classic cat and mouse tale, Unlike Mr. Holmes try not to look too far into it or you may be disappointed.

Published: The Queanbeyan Age
Date of Publication: 13/01/2012
½ February 24, 2016
Like most sequels, "Game of Shadows" is a noticeable step down from the original. The action is a bit more clumsy this second time around, and there is clearly less care taken on fight choreography and story. The plot is harder to follow as character zip from Point A to Point B with very little time to breath in between. On the positive side, the duo of Downey Jr and Jude Law as Holmes and Watson continues to impress, and their bromance-like relationship is just as fresh as it was in the original 2009 film. Another strong factor is Jared Harris' Professor Morriarty who shows real brilliance and menace on screen. Though the movie as a whole failed to "wow" me, I am thankful for that chess game sequence towards the end of the film; up till now, there has been surprisingly few films that show both the evil mastermind engaged in an intellectual duel with the famed detective of 221 Baker Street. The chess sequence shows both masterminds at their pinnacles, demonstrating not only their their talents at chess, but how their brains are wired for the game even when neither are looking at the board. Thus, the film's theme is wonderfully illustrated here: life is a well-played, well-timed chess game, replete with intricacy and good/bad moves. This sequence in itself is worth the price of admission. However... I may not watch this movie again anytime soon because of one huge blunder: Noomi Rapace as the gypsy. I was downright offended how the script-writers conveniently killed off Kelly Reilly's Irene Adler (one of the highlight characters from the first film, a strong female character to boot,) and replaced her with the exact definition of "baggage." That gypsy had exactly one important scene early on, and then her role afterwards became reduced to, literally, looking scared while chewing food, leaving the fighting (and fun) to all the men. Booooo. I shall say it again: Booooo.
½ February 19, 2016
The cinematography was good. So are RDJ and Jude Law, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't getting drowsy at times.
February 12, 2016
In terms of action, adventure and cinematography it does step it up but the first one hit the balance so well that it's hard to step it up without leaning to one side of the scale. It's still a good time because of the bromance that is Lawney and also visually, it looks really good. But if you want something closer to the target in terms of a Sherlockian, Victorian London adventure you should check out the first
February 7, 2016
Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law return for Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows. There is a new criminal mastermind at large his name Professor Moriarty played by the astonishing Jared Harris. He will send the detectives on a wild adventure from England to France, Gypsy camps, Germany and at last Switzerland in a epic game of wits. The cunning Moriarty has proved himself to be Holmes' intellectual equal and always one step ahead. Guy Ritchie has put together a marvelous film that is action-packed, thrilling, smart and at times comedic. This is one to watch.
½ February 6, 2016
The sequel was slightly cheesy because the fact that there was a castle on Rechienbach falls...yes as I said previously I liked the fact that they do it their own way BUT if you basing a film on the book then don't add a castle or anything stupid like that into it...but we're waiting for the sequel to see how he actually faked his death
½ January 31, 2016
It's silly and convoluted, but it still a good movie with the star power, well filmed action and an overall sense of style.
January 30, 2016
The End ? Left indoubtly thrown for a loop; Chess & o2!
January 27, 2016
Far less engaging, stylish and satisfying as the original, A Game of Shadows is still as brilliantly comical but lacks the thrills and pacing of its predecessor.
½ January 26, 2016
Another installment that attempts to be more clever tries to take each explosion a bit bigger, each fight a bit longer and in its effort often loses touch with reality.
January 14, 2016
Though this film is much more easier to follow, "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows" fails to deliver a decent script or a worthy adversary for our heroes. Moriarty was supposed to be Holmes's nemesis. A man who can match his wits and intelligence. However, the only thing I got from him is his henchmen doing all the dirty work and mostly him sitting on a chair talking, talking, and talking. Not much action coming from him. Plus how come no one recognized Holmes in his silly costumes? Not even the bad guy could recognized him and he's smart too! Ugh! This definitely felt like a cash in, lazily made sequel.
January 10, 2016
Loved the first one, watched it with my father. This should be awesome.
½ January 3, 2016
Just as good, if not somewhat better, than the first
January 2, 2016
One of the best interpretations of Sherlock Holmes, and certainly the best Sherlock Holmes movie made so far. Fun, smart, intelligent and the performances are all great (especially RDJ as Sherlock, who is SO good in this role, and Jared Harris as Moriarty, who both are dynamite when together) and it stayed true to the source material while also giving it a new style and adding new things to do. The mystery was well done, the relationships between the characters were good and it feels much like smart Sherlock Holmes rather than dumbing it down for Fast and the Furious action fans. I love it!
December 31, 2015
Although plot holes are numerous in this film, overall it is still impressive, from the amazing forest scene, the battle of wit between Sherlock and Moraity that continues in the whole film, and of course Robert Downey Jr. once again proving to be a perfect fit for his role. I am patiently awaiting a third installment to this great franchise.
½ December 31, 2015
I'm glad that I'm not the only one who thinks that this second movie didn't as good as the first one.. From the performance, Robert Downey Jr. has did it again with his character as Sherlock Holmes, even Dr. John Watson's performance by Jude Law really got a lot of improvement too.. But their performance didn't help a lot as the story of this movie got the audiences a little confusing even though I know it's quite brilliant to make some twist like that.. The other disappointment is Noomi Rapace's performance which is for me just like a sweetener because of the death of Irene Adler, but she's nowhere for replacing Irene Adler.. Overall, for me this sequel is a little disappointment but I must appreciate Guy Ritchie's work since he did his best in here so this rating is the best that I can give to this movie..
December 22, 2015
Overall pretty average, but that "running through he forest while being shot and shelled" scene is so classic Guy Ritchie it's hard not to smile in awe.
December 15, 2015
If the first one was driven by the magnetic chemistry between the two leads and a good old-fashioned mystery plot, this sequel is fueled more by the action set-pieces. Downey, Jr and Law are just as likable and well-matched as they were in the predecessor, and the action sequences are quite exciting, even though it gets repetitive and seems to get louder and louder as it goes on. That's not to say it is a bad film, and you can certainly find some enjoyment in here. But the overall narrative is weak, and there isn't much to remember. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is witty and visually stylish, but nothing more.
December 12, 2015
This is a perfect example of how the sequel could be better than the original. I have watched the movie several times and still keep finding something new; clues I might have missed before. Definitely re-watchable movie, can be funny and thrilling and suspenseful at the same time, despite the sense of inevitability which is the ending scene. Robert Downey jr. as usual masterfully brings life into his character. I could actually "see" Sherlock's thinking process without him saying a word.
½ December 9, 2015
love this movie really adventurous
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