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Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011)

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Sherlock Holmes and his sidekick Dr. Watson join forces to outwit and bring down their fiercest adversary, Professor Moriarty.


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2 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Wolf Kahler ...
Doctor Hoffmanstahl
Iain Mitchell ...
Patricia Slater ...
Shush Club Maitre D'


Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) and his longtime trusted associate, Doctor Watson (Jude Law), take on their arch-nemesis, Professor Moriarty (Jared Harris), with the help of Holmes' older brother Mycroft Holmes (Stephen Fry) and a gypsy named Simza (Noomi Rapace). Written by ABID NAZIR

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, and some drug material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





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Release Date:

16 December 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sherlock Holmes 2  »

Box Office


$125,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$39,637,079 (USA) (16 December 2011)


$186,830,669 (USA) (30 March 2012)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Robert Morley and Stephen Fry have both played Oscar Wilde and Mycroft Holmes. In the Gyles Brandreth books where Oscar is a detective, his friend Arthur Conan Doyle states that Oscar was the inspiration for Mycroft. See more »


When running in the woods, Watson gets wounded on the right side by a bullet, shown in slow motion. When they are in train, later on, the wound is on the left side. See more »


[first lines]
Dr. John Watson: [voice-over] The year was 1891. Storm clouds were brewing over Europe. France and Germany were at each other's throats, the result of a series of bombings. Some said it was the Nationalists. Others, the anarchists. But as usual, my friend Sherlock Holmes, had a different theory entirely.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Warner Bros/Village Roadshow/Silver Pictures logos, opening title, closing title and part of the closing credits appear in the pages of Dr. Watson's manuscript, with the latter two accompanied by illustrations of scenes from the film. See more »


The Green Hills of Tyrol
[Music adapted for bagpipes by John MacLeod from "William Tell" by Gioachino Rossini]
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

13 June 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) and Dr. Watson (Jude Law) again battle wits with arch enemy Professor James Moriarty.

There is wrong-doing afoot. Our entertainment history is being rewritten to such a point we will no longer know or remember what came first. What we have now is a Sherlock Holmes as an Action Hero, something Sir Arthur Conan Doyle never contemplated. Now the Green Lantern is gay. Spiderman once had a dark suit. Snow White will now be remembered for her troubles with an evil Queen and not for those happy-go-lucky dwarfs (except for Grumpy, of course).

Where will it all end? Will Anne of Green Gables become the new Laura Croft? Will Nancy Drew become a hit-man…um… woman? Will the Hardy Boys become the new Batman and Robin? And, those poor three little pigs, what will they become? And, will we ever hear that we are glad those superheroes are on our side or hear the last line in the fairytale that "they lived happily ever after?" Point made? Maybe.

I feel many of us would have liked Robert Downey Jr to become another Action Hero (yes, other than Iron Man) with another name and not Sherlock Holmes. And, he still could have a sidekick as, perhaps, a Watson with another name too. Put Sherlock Holmes back where he belongs. Downey is not even close to being a Sherlock Holmes. But, it is what it is and we have what we have and there doesn't seem to be much any of us can do about it. Well, that is, unless I become king. Then it will change back to what it all was. Pity that it cannot happen. I would be a good king.

As for this event, you will see a lot of very good CGI, a very fast talking Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr ) because -- remember: he doesn't have a British accent and his talking at light speed will cover that up. So what we have here are fiction, and fantasy where only the names remain the same as written by Sir Arthur, who at this point must be spinning in his grave at warp speed.

The first half of this movie is a complete mess. Nothing flowed where one could understand what was going on; hence nothing was going on. When characters talk in darkened scenes with clipped English, it is difficult to follow anything. What we heard was something about Watson's marriage, mind games with Moriarty that came to nothing, and protecting a gypsy fortune teller (Noomi Rapace as Madam Heron) whose brother is missing. The second half was more in tune with what the movie should have been all along, but still there was no caring about anything except to have this over with. And, it was much too long.

Downey's Holmes overacts all the way thru and this is most annoying. He is too causal and too flippant. The comedic banter between Holmes and Watson was lame, not funny and most of the time unintelligible. Jude Law's Watson tries to be serious but is often taken in by Sherlock's prankish behavior. Wasted in here was Rachael McAdams as Irene Adler. The only serious persons in here are Moriarty (Jared Harris) and Inspector Lestrade (Eddie Marsan) who together wished there was not so much action and a better script with the old Sherlock back.

If you have no idea who the real Sherlock Holmes is, then never mind. Enjoy this mindless Action Hero story and have a nice day. But, for the record, as an Action Hero movie with CGI trappings, let us hope that we have seen the last of this fraudulent Sherlock Holmes. Also, for the record, Robert Downey Jr is a good actor, but not when he pretends to be Sherlock Holmes. And, although I did not like the first Sherlock movie with Downey, I must admit, it was much better than this one. Had the scenes been slower and easier to follow, this may have been okay, but not the way it is now. The Editor must have been on a scene time limit schedule.

Whenever old fairy tales or once admired Action Heroes that existed in our past come alive again and have involvement with the dark side or do things we are not familiar with Hollywood calls it "rebooting" and we will be truly lost. Look what they did to the new Star Trek story. That, folks, is where we are headed. Yes, there is wrong-doing afoot. Can't you see it? Did I mention that I would be a good king?

Violence; Yes. Sex: No. Nudity: No. Language: No.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Jude Law would be a better Sherlock. theveneficus
The chemistry between Jude/Watson and RDJ/Holmes NieAn
Sherlock Holmes 3 is most likely dead in the water John_Ax
How has this movie got a 7+ rating? It's utter trollop. worxpace
I really hope someone can answer this... ooagentmm
I really liked it. mbphilly79

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