Robert Downey Jr.’s Low-Tech ‘Sherlock Holmes’ Packs Powerful Punch

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CHICAGO – Instead of relying of high-tech gadgetry and big-budget Hollywood CGI, Guy Ritchie’s gritty “Sherlock Holmes” does what major films often don’t: delivers big-payoff action sequences merely utilizing the body and mind.

While that concept is consistent with the technology present in a dreary 1890s London during Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s time (Sherlock Holmes is his most legendary literary character), that doesn’t mean a big-ticket film wouldn’t be tantalized into injecting unauthentic visual ridiculousness. Thankfully, Guy Ritchie resists.

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Instead, Robert Downey Jr. treats us with a glimpse into Sherlock Holmes’ brilliant mind as he deconstructs and debilitates his enemies through the acute understanding of the human body, its weaknesses and how it can most effectively be broken.

These well-choreographed, no-weapon sequences redefine the traditional fight scene with masterful execution, original style and memorable cinematic achievement. Aside from the brute force of his fist, Holmes’ trademark is his Spock-like logic and his ability to crack a case through unorthodox methods.

StarRead Adam Fendelman’s full review of “Sherlock Holmes”.

While Sherlock Holmes as a brilliant detective has become one of pop culture’s most recognized and enduring adventure figures on par with Indiana Jones, Robert Downey Jr. embodies the role naturally with just the right balance of wit, brain, brute and wild stallion.

“He was probably the first super hero – an intellectual super hero,” Robert Downey Jr. said of his role. “He was, and probably still is, one of the most recognizable icons on Earth so much so that a lot of people actually thought that Sherlock Holmes was a real person.”

“Sherlock Holmes,” which is directed by Guy Ritchie, stars Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams, Mark Strong, Eddie Marsan, Robert Maillet, Geraldine James, Kelly Reilly, William Houston, Hans Matheson, James Fox, William Hope, Clive Russell, Oran Gurel and David Garrick. The film, which has a running time of 128 minutes, is rated “PG-13” for intense sequences of violence and action, some startling images and a scene of suggestive material. “Sherlock Holmes” opened everywhere on Dec. 25, 2009.

StarContinuing reading for Adam Fendelman’s full “Sherlock Holmes” review.

Robert Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes in Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes
Robert Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes in Guy Ritchie’s “Sherlock Holmes”.
Image credit: Warner Bros.

StarContinuing reading for Adam Fendelman’s full “Sherlock Holmes” review.

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