Posts Tagged ‘Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows’

Downey Jr. dusts off his deerstalker RICHARD CROUSE METRO CANADA Published: December 08, 2011

sherlock_holmes_a_game_of_shadows_wallpaperRobert Downey Jr. knows how to work a room. I notice this while at the swank-a-delic Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills for a press conference to celebrate the release of Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows.

It’s a packed panel, including co-stars Noomi Rapace (the original Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) and Jared Harris, mega producer Joel Silver and Downey’s business and life partner Susan. Between them there are untold Oscar nominations and hundreds of millions in box office returns, but that doesn’t mean squat when Downey enters and takes centre stage.

All eyes — and 90 per cent of the questions — go to him. Midway he feigns embarrassment at the attention and says, “Why doesn’t someone ask Joel Silver a question?”

Why? Because Downey is the most quotable, funny and memorable person in the room, that’s why.

Here’s a sample of what he had to say.

On making sequels:
“There should be a whole online support team for anyone who has ever been involved in making a second part to a first that worked. There is so much to learn. The greatest disguise was us disguising ourselves as consummate by-the-numbers professionals when, in fact, we’re all incredibly eccentric.”

When asked to talk about performing Sherlock Holmes’s drag scenes:
“I guess we’re not talking about this as one of the most important films of the year. I put on some makeup. How are we going to get nominated with these kinds of questions?”

On improving on set:
“I think the goal is to make a well-written scene seem improvised, or to find things in the room you couldn’t have known until you get in the real situation and just try and improve things as you go along.”

On why his co-star was absent:
“Jude (Law) would have been here, by the by, but his son had a soccer game.”

On keeping the set “green”:
“I just remember that every animal that was harmed was promptly taxidermied and sent as a gift to one of the many ecological companies who have these huge concerns that I validate.”

On working with Jude Law and director Guy Ritchie:
“Jude and I are pretty close, but Guy and I are practically brothers. There have been times I have wanted to lob off his head with a machete.”

On collaborating with his director and fellow actors:
“It was a democracy in the truest and most frustrating and most rewarding sense of the word.”

Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows light on storyline, heavy on action and witty banter Reel Guys by Richard Crouse and Ned Ehrbar METRO CANADA Published: December 16, 2011

sherlockSYNOPSIS: The puzzle at the heart of Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows begins with the death of the Crown Prince of Austria. Written off as a suicide, Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) deduces there is more to the story. Enter Watson (Jude Law), who should be on his honeymoon, a beautiful fortune-teller (Noomi Rapace, the original girl with the dragon tattoo), the unspeakably evil Moriarty and more intrigue than you can shake a deerstalker hat at. This week the game’s afoot with Reel Guy Ned Ehrbar!

Star Rating:

Richard: 2 ½ Stars
Ned: 3 Stars

Richard: Ned, there is no question that RDJ and Law bring a certain joie de vivre to the usually staid portrayal of the great detective and his loyal sidekick. They look like they’re having a ball. probably more fun than the audience, in fact.  As enjoyable as it is to watch these two riff off one another it soon becomes clear the whole movie is nothing more than a vehicle for their banter.

Ned: The banter is delightful, there’s no denying that. But when they’re not sniping at each other, you start to notice the plot doesn’t really measure up to a detective of Holmes’ stature —  or offer any original ideas. Basically, if you don’t want the movie spoiled for you, wipe “the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” from your memory, as Moriarty’s scheme is exactly the same in both movies. I’m assuming the filmmakers are banking on no one remembering that movie, though — which is a safe bet — but still.

RC: Agreed, if you can figure out the story. Confused and confusing, the plot zips along at such a rapid pace you’ll barely know it doesn’t make much sense because director Guy Ritchie fills the screen with atmospheric, wildly edited scenes anchored by Downey’s flamboyant performance. It looks cool and will make you laugh occasionally, but the quips and extravagantly edited sequences are only fun in the moment. They don’t add up to much of a movie.

NE: Some of those cool-looking scenes can grate, as well. A little bit of the Sherlock slow-mo fight analysis goes a long way, but since it got such a good reaction in the first film, Ritchie lays on the bullet time a little thick here. One element that did work for me though was Jared Harris’ Moriarty, a dangerously brilliant villain with a plausible cover story as a mild-mannered professor. It’s a shame he’s not in the movie more, though.

RC: Harris has one seminal psycho moment–is there anything crazier than belting out an aria while torturing your nemesis?—but I didn’t think Noomi Repace, while eye catching as Sim, was given enough to do to be truly memorable.

NE: True, she doesn’t get much to do besides react to the dynamic duo’s chicanery and drop helpful reminders about the plot. And the less said about RJD on on a pony, the better. Still, audiences could do a lot worse.