Saturday, July 25, 2015

Mr. Holmes (2015)

Holmes : Ian McKellen

"I've decided to write the story down; as it was, not as John made it. Get it right, before I die."

The movie, set in 1947 has a 93 year old Sherlock returning from a trip to Japan where he has been searching for something that will work better to help his fading memory than the royal jelly he has been experimenting with.

Sherlock has one last mystery he has to grapple with, he can't remember his last case. Dr. Watson had chronicled it, but Sherlock knows that wasn't what really happened.

Sherlock spends his time keeping bees, and he is looking to put the memories of his life in order. Why had he retired to this farm in the country. Why did he stop working? Sherlock tries to sort out the details of his last case.

 Sherlock goes to the movies to see one of the Basil Rathbone films to see if that would jar his memory. Nicholas Rowe, who portrayed Holmes in the 1985 film Young Sherlock Holmes plays the Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes in the clip shown on the screen. Sherlock tells his housekeeper's son Roger that the movie was rubbish. It didn't help his memory at all.

Sherlock begins to get flashbacks of the case thirty years earlier involving Ann Kelmot. He feels really guilty. He knows something very bad must have happened to force him in to retirement for thirty five years.

Sherlock finally solves the mystery of what really happened in his last case and ties the strands of his life together. John Watson, Mrs. Hudson, Mycroft: they are all gone now, but Sherlock is able to put his life in perspective. Sherlock also solves a mystery that has been bothering him about his bees.

Sherlock finally develops empathy and marks the end of hi life with two noble gestures.

Ian McKellan was great as the elderly Sherlock and the movie was very reverential in tone and very well done. I think it was great that the movie made Sherlock appear as a real character who watched in amusement at his fictional portrayal in film.

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