I love everything Sherlock Holmes, especially the modern adaptations of the books such as the BBC series Sherlock starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, the two films starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law and lastly, the American series, Elementary, starring Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu. From that I figured, I had to watch this new adaptation starring Ian McKellen.
‘The story is set in 1947, following a long-retired Holmes living in a Sussex village with his housekeeper and [her] rising detective son. But then he finds himself haunted by an unsolved 30-year old case. Holmes memory isn’t what it used to be, so he only remembers fragments of the case: a confrontation with an angry husband, [and] a secret bond with his beautiful but unstable wife.’ (IMDB)
This magical story sees Mr Holmes in his self-made isolation from the world as he lives his old age. Sherlock is suffering with his aging, as his brain doesn’t work how it used to; he can’t remember his old cases as much. The film sees Sherlock go over his one unfinished case with the help of young Roger, the housekeeper’s son. While Roger helps Sherlock with the case, Sherlock teaches Roger the art of bee-keeping, something that Sherlock Holmes, in his legacy, enjoys. This shows an amazing relationship grow between the two, but not everything is as perfect as it seems for Mrs. Munro, the housekeeper, who struggles to look after a stubborn old man while ensuring her child is safe from harm. She eventually considers leaving Mr Holmes to work in another household.
I really enjoyed the film, it was very simple in its concept and the film isn’t particularly punchy (like many of the newer adaptations) but it offers a chance for the current generation to see Sherlock in a different way; it is very unique and interesting. There wasn’t a large cast and most of the film only focuses on Sherlock, Roger and Mrs. Munro but this just seemed to add to the magic of it all.
I truly recommend this film, if you haven’t seen it, even if you don’t know much about Sherlock Holmes. (However, this is the only modern version that sees very little of Holmes’ sidekick Dr. John Watson).