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12 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

After all, Irene Adler is THE woman

Author: klingon-attack from Germany
15 July 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Now, I just watched this movie and while it is still one of the better SH movies I have watched, I still give it only 9 out of 10 because (SPOILERS! SPOILERS!) firstly Mycroft Holmes was so terribly slim and good-looking (in contrary to the canon) and secondly Cadogan West was actually the criminal and thirdly they even dared to combine the SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA and BRUCE-PARTINGTON!! OK OK, I won't be too harsh. It's a great movie and showed SH with a genuinely human side. Without so much as saying it he actually fell in love with Irene Adler who was a criminal (which is also not according to the canon, I might add), but who would Sherlock Holmes be more likely to fall in love with anyway? Watson was very cool IMHO. He was miles and miles and miles away from Bruce's Watson and that's saying a lot (I never liked Bruce as Watson but Rathbone is the KING)! One of the smaller things that struck me was the incredibly fake looking "Baker Street" sign towards the end of the film.

All in all it's a very cool SH movie (apart from Mycroft!). I simply loved Matt Frewer this time.

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15 out of 21 people found the following review useful:

highly entertaining fun for the kids

Author: lotsafun from Angel City
8 November 2005

The four Sherlock Holmes movies by Hallmark are just good fun versions for kids. Don't even try to take 'em seriously folks. Don't expect them to be artistic masterpieces based on literary classics. These TV movies were made for a family audience and there's plenty of comedy for kids in these things. Frewer's Holmes must be seen to be believed! He's a hoot! He's the most eccentric Holmes EVER! Kids will love this guy! Kenneth Welsh is much more traditional in his role and he makes a very fine Watson. These Frewer Holmes flicks are sure to entertain the kids and will hopefully encourage them to read more about The Master Detective. They certainly wont get bored watching any of these with the ultra-intense and comedic Frewer on the screen.

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A good adaption

Author: 1bilbo from England
17 May 2015

It is not awful - just not for the purist.

I suspect that Johnny Lee Miller adapted his Sherlock after watching this film.

Watson is excellent as are the villains.

I have a complete collection of the original Strand magazines and am well aware of how many versions of Holmes do vary as do many of the plot lines. However, I feel that a little artistic licence can be allowed otherwise it would be like watching the Shakespearian society reciting Othello as against watching Orson Well's superb adaption.

One thing was missing though - Holmes' cocaine addiction, remembering that these drugs could be freely purchased in that era.

Overall worth a watch.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Worst. Holmes. Ever.

Author: Leofwine_draca from United Kingdom
16 November 2015

One of four Sherlock Holmes TV movies made in Canada at the turn of the century and starring Matt Frewer as the eponymous detective. I hate to say it but having also seen CASE OF THE WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE, I think these were four films too many.

THE ROYAL SCANDAL is an appalling Holmes adaptation, one seemingly aimed at children. That's the only way I can explain the horrendous, pantomime style acting and the join-the-dots style of storytelling. Irene Adler's in this one, but she's unrecognisable from the story, and the plot seems to mix in a few different Holmes tales along the way.

The production values are just about acceptable, I suppose, but the plotting is straight out of some TV movie of the week and the characters unrecognisable from the Conan Doyle creations. Frewer's fey, foppish Holmes in particular seems to be like Mr Wickham out of PRIDE & PREJUDICE and has to be the worst on-screen Holmes ever. As such, I advise you to avoid this film like the plague.

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2 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Awful, just awful

Author: jarotra from Tinseltown, USA
8 September 2008

The awful applies to Sherlock Holmes himself - Matt Frewer criminally miscast. He plays annoying with great facility, but even with his quirks Sherlock Holmes is usually at least likable. Three stars given only for the very nice production, and the contrast of Kenneth Welsh as Watson, showing what a serviceable actor can do. Otherwise a very amateurish job of acting by all concerned, having all the earmarks of a vanity project done by, oh, say an ambitious billionaire wanting to play Sherlock, or for Star Trek TNG fans, a self indulgent crew member acting out his fantasies on the holodeck.

Very disappointing, unwatchable except for the fact that I could not find my remote control, and a somewhat interesting plot that kept me from looking harder for the remote control. Still, I did not watch to the end, so take that into consideration.

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7 out of 23 people found the following review useful:

A Misguided Adaptation

Author: KatharineFanatic from United States
20 October 2001

When Sherlock Holmes faces an old enemy in the beautiful form of Irene Adler, a woman with a keenly criminal mind, his wills become torn between sentimentality and justice. He has been commissioned by the Prince of Germany to recover a compromising photograph taken with Irene, but is soon swept into a world of political intrigue, unrest, scandal, and double intentions that could be his downfall.

Filled with dark, fog-shrouded chases through London, heart-stopping instances of horror, and momentary glimpses into the mind of Sherlock Holmes, "The Royal Scandal" was meant to be a classic among film adaptations. Sadly, it falls far short. The film begins most appropriately with a disclaimer saying that it has not been endorsed by any member of Doyle's family. This in itself was a grand giveaway that the following hour and a half of whirlwind scandal, deception, romance and imperial intrigue was not exactly what good old Doyle intended when he penned "A Scandal in Bohemia," upon which the production is very loosely based.

Given, the film is not an entire flop. It manages to follow closely the story in some areas and expand out in others. Borrowing the blueprint scam and political tensions from His Last Bow, it attempts to make for itself a winning mystery of charm and interest and could have carried itself off well were it not for the gaping holes in character development. Our first and most glaring flaw is found in Holmes himself... a distracted, romantically entangled Holmes. A Sherlock Holmes who finds himself blinded by beauty and seduction, who prides himself one moment on "being the one exception" in the male race who consistently gives in to Irene Adler's temptations; and the next finds himself compromised.

Non-literary fans of Sherlock Holmes will even notice the flaws; that Homes would ever place personal interest before one of his cases is ridiculous; and his interest in Irene is played out on more a personal nature than a willingness to corner her for the government's sake. To Sherlock Holmes, this would be the ultimate humiliation. On the other end of the tables, the political intrigue that is played out is very enthralling as Irene and Holmes play out a delightful game of cat and mouse. London is at its most mysterious and sinister. We are also introduced to characters only alluded to in the novels... namely his political brother Mycroft, and the street-wise Wiggins.

In conclusion, it is a film that wavers between being likable due to the nature of its intent and distasteful to true lovers of the Canon. If you are a died-in-the-wool Sherlockian like myself, you will find Holmes inability to control his feelings somewhat hard to swallow. But the rest of the production is just seductive enough to draw you into a world of lies, deceptions, and double agents that would please any mystery buff. Hallmark could have done better; maybe next time their writer would fare better in actually *reading* the Canon.

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