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COLUMN: ‘Enola Holmes’ wasn’t the best



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Henry Cavill, Millie Bobby Brown and Sam Claflin star in Netflix's "Enola Holmes." Movie Stills Database

I used to be really into Sherlock Holmes. It began with the BBC show starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and would later evolve into reading most of the stories. They were really fun when I was 15 years old. 

So hearing about “Enola Holmes” had me somewhat interested. While I left the Sherlock phase of my life a few years ago, I still had fond memories of the stories and was open to seeing something new. While I’m generally not very into spin-offs, I thought this one had some potential. I’m not sure if I was right to have faith, though. 

“Enola Holmes” is the story of Sherlock’s younger sister Enola, played by Millie Bobby Brown, and her search for her mother who has gone missing. While on her quest, she meets a dashing young marquess who is having some problems of his own, so she has to help out there too. It has all the makings of an enjoyable mystery. 

If only it were good. 

My favorite part of “Enola Holmes” was probably the mystery. While a lot of it doesn’t make sense, it was enjoyable to follow how wild it got. There are some fun situations for the characters to work their way out of, and I did enjoy watching some of those parts. Just don’t think about the movie once it’s over, because a lot of it falls apart. 

The problem is I can’t think of anything else I really liked. 

The performances aren’t necessarily bad, but none of them are particularly strong either. I’m pretty sure I liked Brown when I watched “Stranger Things,” but lately I’ve begun to wonder if I was wrong. Between this and “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” I just keep seeing her and thinking she’s not all that good. 

But at the very least, her casting was alright, unlike in the case of Henry Cavill. I really don’t understand why he was cast as Sherlock Holmes. I know it’s hard to follow Robert Downey Jr. and Benedict Cumberbatch, two great actors who put their own unique spins on the role, but I feel like Cavill could have at least done something remarkable. I just didn’t get anything from him, and I don’t know if I’ll even remember him playing Holmes. 

The entire movie has basically one stylistic choice, and it’s used very poorly. Every once in a while, Enola will look at the camera and say some miscellaneous piece of information, generally related to a new development in the case. While I like that it tried to do something interesting, it always felt kind of distracting and even a little annoying. A lot of the time, it wasn’t anything worth mentioning and sometimes it would’ve been better if it was just flat-out removed. 

But the biggest crime of the film is how boring it is — because it is really boring. For some reason the movie is more than two hours long, and I felt it. And it really doesn’t need all that time. Honestly, you could remove the fourth wall breaks and make it a lot easier to get through. 

All in all, I just didn’t like “Enola Holmes.” Despite some potential, I had trouble really getting into it. I can still imagine others liking it though, and if you’re still interested you can take a look on Netflix.

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