Sherlock Holmes 1 and 2 4K Ultra
review by Bobby Blakey
When Robert Downey rebooted his career with Iron Man he took Hollywood by storm once again. While he was the centerpiece of launching the Marvel cinematic universe that was not his only franchise. In 2009 he stepped into the role of the iconic detective along with co-star Jude Law for Sherlock Holmes. The film was a success and spawned a sequel in 2011 Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and now Warner Bros is bringing them both to 4K Ultra for the first time.
Sherlock Holmes follows Sherlock Holmes has made his reputation finding the truth at the heart of the most complex mysteries. With the aid of Dr. John Watson, his trusted ally, the renowned "consulting detective" is unequaled in his pursuit of criminals of every stripe, whether relying on his singular powers of observation, his remarkable deductive skills, or the blunt force of his fists. But now a storm is gathering over London, a threat unlike anything that Holmes has ever confronted...and just the challenge he's looking for. After a string of brutal, ritualistic murders, Holmes and Watson arrive just in time to save the latest victim and uncover the killer: the unrepentant Lord Blackwood. Racing to stop Blackwood's deadly plot, Holmes and Watson plunge into a world of the dark arts and startling new technologies, where logic is sometimes the best crime-fighting weapon...but where a good right hook will often do the job.
While I have enjoyed some of the varying offers of the Sherlock Holmes character over the years I wouldn’t call myself a big fan. When this film came out I was way more interested in the character thanks to the cast that I had ever been before. For me this first film captured and the essence of the famed detective while putting a modern twist while still keeping it a period piece. Downey and Law both fully embraced the characters and their chemistry is a strong reason this film works so well and a must for these films to deliver. I am pretty hit and miss on
the stylization of films like this, but Richie created a clever vibe to it that sucked you right in and never lets up on the laughs, action and mystery until the very end.
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows follows Around the globe, headlines break the news: a scandal takes down an Indian cotton tycoon; a Chinese opium trader dies of an apparent overdose; bombings in Strasbourg and Vienna; the death of an American steel magnate... no one sees the connective thread between these seemingly random events—no one, that is, except the great Sherlock Holmes, who has discerned a deliberate web of death and destruction. At its center sits a singularly sinister spider: Moriarty. Holmes’ investigation into Moriarty’s plot becomes more dangerous as it leads him and Watson out of London to France, Germany and finally Switzerland. But the cunning Moriarty is always one step ahead, and moving perilously close to completing his ominous plan. If he succeeds, it will not only bring him immense wealth and power but alter the course of history.
When the second film came out like most I was excited for more mystery and adventure with this duo and was not disappointed. Not sure it has the same magic of the first but I still really have a great time with this one. I think part of that is the newness is gone and you know what you are getting this time around so the story has to carry it along with the cast. I was so happy they began creating a bigger universe here with the addition of Moriarty’s existence at the end of the original and then carrying into this one. I don’t think this story was as strong as it could have been, but still worked and delivered what I had hoped for and making want more, which I hopefully we will eventually see someday.
I could go on and on about the performances and clever action etc, but being older releases just isn’t necessary at this point. If you happened to be late to this franchise then these new 4K Ultra releases are the perfect time to fix that. They look fantastic and really enhance to overall style of it all.