This Guy Ritchie film is a nice diversion, but there is nothing that will particularly stay with you. Here’s what I came away with though: Robert Downey, Jr. has suddenly (or not so suddenly) reached to the level of George Clooney. Both immerse themselves in their characters with ease and make them fit like a glove. And they do this on a level that still allows us to appreciate their acting ability. In other words, we don’t forget this is Clooney, this is Downey. Somehow this pulls us in on the joke, the gig, the schtick. We see they’re having fun and enjoy what they’re doing. So we do too. This is different from those actors (good ones) that make you forget they’re playing a role. It’s a fine line and a subtle difference, but it makes all the difference in how we come out of the film. Those “immersion” actors take the more risky path it seems to me.
Jude Law is Dr. Watson and both are different from the Holmes and Watson we’re perhaps used to. Completely different characters, and a completely different relationship between the two. Guy Ritchie always gives us something – sometimes more and sometimes less. He’s also obviously set us up for a franchise, as the name Moriarty is dropped in at the last moment. I suppose it matters how much this one makes though. $209 Million? Get ready for II and III (or SH and the case of…).