There are a lot of critics and other film people out there that hate it when movies break the fourth wall, i.e. the characters talk to the audience if they were right there along on the adventure. Not me. I love that shit, makes films like Deadpool, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and Wayne’s World that much more enjoyable. And unique. Which is why I very much enjoyed Netflix’s new original film, ENOLA HOLMES, which flips the old Sherlock Holmes detective adventures that we’ve seen a billion times before on its head with Enola being the main protagonist and her constantly breaking the fourth wall to talk to us. It also works so well because Millie Bobby Brown pulls it off with a fantastic performance. Even though the movie also has a good old fashioned mystery that I was into as well, I think if the movie had played it completely straight, it wouldn’t have been as much fun, interesting, and engaging as it was. It would’ve been just another Sherlock adventure, but this time gender flipped. And I know a lot of men out there eye roll when it comes to gender flipped movies (especially after the travesty that was Ghostbusters 2016), because for some reason it enrages them because they think its trying to push some feminist agenda. Yet they aren’t so opposed when studios come up with original material and characters for women to inhabit and possibly make memorable and classic? Jesus, some of us are rude and weird aren’t we? I love gender flipped movies and stories, as long as they work on their own.
Ghostbusters 2016 didn’t work NOT because of the women involved but because of director Paul Feig, his terrible non-screenplay with 99% ad-libbing and no story, and him not knowing when to yell “cut” and move on. Everyone one in the cast there did the best they could with the garbage material they were given. Not their fault. Enola Holmes, and other gender flipped movies that came out this year such as Birds of Prey, work because EVERY part of the film making process of those projects are fleshed out, not rushed, and pay attention to detail . The performances are great, the story, dialogue, and screenplay are solid, the cinematography is gorgeous, and the direction is tight. Per IMDB, it describes Enola Holmes as: “When Enola Holmes-Sherlock’s teen sister-discovers her mother missing, she sets off to find her, becoming a super-sleuth in her own right as she outwits her famous brother and unravels a dangerous conspiracy around a mysterious young Lord.” This movie is mostly getting positive reviews out there, but the ones that are negative either complain that it’s just a gender flipped Sherlock Holmes movie and/or that it caters to younger audiences too much. Who fucking cares? Seriously? As long as it is a good, solid movie, with a good, solid story, why the fuck would you care about things like that? And I don’t think the movie caters to younger audiences too hard, as there is plenty of action sequences and some jarringly frightening almost death scenes and blunt force trauma within the 2 hour runtime, but my point is, it shouldn’t matter. It only matters if you are entertained. Which this movie did, for not just me, but my wife as well. She said that this and The Broken Hearts Gallery are two of the better movies she’s seen in quite awhile. While I wouldn’t say they are masterful by any means, I tend to agree with her a bit.
While the movie is about 10 to 15 minutes too long and drags a bit in the middle, the story felt fun and fresh, the movie looked nice as it felt like there was high production value to make everything within it look like it really took place way back when, and the performances were strong and charming. Millie Bobby Brown steals the show out from everyone, and now she can say that she has another iconic character in her career portfolio other than just being Eleven on Stranger Things. Helena Bonham Carter and Sam Claflin as Enola’s mother and brother are solid even though they aren’t in the film terribly much, but the other scene stealer in this is obviously Henry Cavill, playing Enola’s other brother, Sherlock. He’s in the movie much more than I thought he’d be, for being the ‘with’ in the movies credits, and I liked that his rendition of Sherlock wasn’t so over the top and much more subtle, showing us a side of that character we hadn’t seen before. I would love for him to come back in possible sequels to this, yet he doesn’t need more screen time, just as much as this please to not make it seem like the filmmakers are desperate to cash in on Cavill’s hunky/handsome face and physique for the ladies. I’m just happy that this seemed like an original movie that could’ve played in theaters and not just a cheap mediocre “grand” Netflix production. *coughTheOldGuardcough*. With this and The Devil All The Time, maybe Netflix is actually going to start trying? *looks at calendar* Well, fuck…nevermind, Adam Sandler’s terrible looking Netflix original film Hubie Halloween comes out in two weeks…so no, the game is not afoot.