People don't seem to be tolerant of anything these days, especially of humor. This is the right laugh-out-loud, so-ridiculous-it's-gotta-be-on purpose, make-your-jaw-drop, damn near perfect antidote to the heavy, politically-laden, hysterical-about-anything society we live in these days.
It's a humourous take at one of the most iconic fictional characters ever created, who has not only found a place in popular culture for the past 100 years but also weaved itself in popular slang. (Yeah, no s***, Sherlock.)
I read a lot of 1-Star reviews with people whining and complaining that they left in the middle of the movie, or they thought it was absurd... Well, that's the point. This movie wasn't made to take Arthur Conan Doyle's legacy seriously. It doesn't even take itself seriously with an out-of-the-blue musical piece that pops out of nowhere. And I stress: that's the point.
I've seen a couple of bombs with Will Ferrell that were hard to watch. This isn't one, by any means. "Holmes & Watson" miraculously manages to be a witty, at times beautifully-written piece of comedy with an amazing cast, as evident by the amazing John C. Reily ("Magnolia"), Rebecca Hall ("Transcendent", "Vicky Cristina Barcelona") and even Ralph Fiennes, who is brilliant as Lord Voldemort in the "Harry Potter" saga.
And the reason I mention the audience when I bring up the reviews on this site is because a lot of it is American and a lot of the humor in this British-set comedy is geared towards Americans. And in 2019, America couldn't be more divided in this Trump-era. So I would imagine it's no surprise when a lot of Trump supporters watch this movie and have to listen to jokes about the kind of President they have in office right now: a politically incompetent showman who is also a tyrant and a buffoon. I imagine this deep dig doesn't go over well with a lot of the hardcore pro-Trump audience. Or maybe they don't like the red "Make England Great Again" fez which mocks the signature red Trump cap. I would go as far as as saying that what really strikes a nerve is Dr. Grace Hart's (Rebecca Hall) line about women receiving shock treatments to cure feminine hysteria. Ooh, that's gotta leave a mark with feminists. Not to mention the constant "A female D-O-C-T-O-R?" remarks by the lead characters. Yeah, I would imagine that stings... in a comedy movie.
Or maybe is the reference to American's seemingly m God-given-right to own and use guns. "They're Americans. Of course they would use a gun", Sherlock says at one point.
But that's what humor is. It makes light of important topics and flips them upside down so one can think about subjects and ideas and even firm beliefs in a different way. It's meant to create an escape from reality and this movie does dances with reality but ultimately is successful at being funny in its own way.
Plus, just the crazy amount of thought that went into the lead characters' dialogue is something to behold and applaud. Of course the delivery is over the top. But the point is that Ferrell and Reilly do it SO well. To the point where I was left wanting more. Like, right now.
So in a time where most people seemingly become hysterical with just about anything, I applaud the cast and director Etan Cohen for having the gumption to make a satire with a beautiful period production design and comedic timing that will not only make you laugh but ALSO provoke your thought at the same time.
And with the British theme in mind, this European says: well done, chaps.
17 out of 26 found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.