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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Frenetic, fun and very stylised
There is a lot that might be said about Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows, I'll try to keep it to a minimum. We are served everything we loved from the first movie with a lot more bolted on besides. There is a lot of humour and excellent touches that demonstrate Shadows was made by people who know what they're doing and having a lot of fun doing it. It is superbly stylised...
Published 22 months ago by J. Potter

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes Triple Play
The movie I saw in the cinema and enjoyed - wanted to buy a Triple Play which is usually Blu-ray DVD and a Digital Copy from iTunes - This was not stated in the title on amazon but the digital copy is in fact an ULTRAVIOLET digital copy and will not play in iTunes will also not play for me on my Mac and I am sending tonnes of e-mails answering lots of stupid questions and...
Published on 17 May 2012 by AJSPortsmouth


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Frenetic, fun and very stylised, 26 Nov 2012
By 
J. Potter "johniebg" (Berkshire, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
There is a lot that might be said about Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows, I'll try to keep it to a minimum. We are served everything we loved from the first movie with a lot more bolted on besides. There is a lot of humour and excellent touches that demonstrate Shadows was made by people who know what they're doing and having a lot of fun doing it. It is superbly stylised with enigmatic acting, if woefully wasting the very talented female leads. It takes the plot beyond Sherlock's usual remit, galloping across Europe with assassinations, hand to hand combat and explosions usually reserved for Bond or Bourne. Come the end the pace has been so fast you might feel a little dizzy with several quite puzzling but pertinent questions on the tip of your tongue, which matter little because we have been so wonderfully entertained.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows - Another entertaining romp from Downey and Ritchie, 17 Aug 2012
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Over the years the character of Sherlock Holmes has been translated onto screen in a variety of ways - true to Conan Doyle's original (Jeremy Brett), as a comic figure (Michael Caine), as a propaganda instrument (Basil Rathbone) and by a host of others in ways too numerous to mention here. But of all of them, this has to be the most fun.

Guy Ritchie's vision of the Holmes legend manages to get a few names, the odd line and occasional detail from the books, but most of the character of Holmes has been reinvented into Robert Downey Jr's very knowing hero. Watson is transformed into much more of a man of action in one of Jude Law's better performances, and it is good to see the Doctor portrayed as a dependable intelligent man capable of his own thought and action, rather than the blind bumbling fool he is often seen as. There is also a fun cameo for Stephen Fry as Mycroft (the interplay between Holmes and Mycroft seems to give a wink to the execrable Peter Cook/Dudley Moore spoof, if Ritchie watched that film as part of his research then I tip my hat to him for his diligence and willingness to suffer for his art!). Ritchie's directorial vision of a Victorian London just starting to enter the modern age, especially with the pictures of the construction of great monuments and buildings we all take for granted today, is definitely refreshing.

With an almost steam punk atmosphere to his vision of Europe, Ritchie weaves a tale around Holmes' struggle against the machinations of a certain Prof. Moriarty, of infamous memory. Moriarty, played with a gleeful evilness by Jared Harris is an opponent worthy of Holmes, and the final face off between the two is very well realised. Utilising his reinvention of the characters to its utmost Ritcie gives us a well paced action film full of twists, turns, surprised and comedy. It's slick, it's fun, and it's damnably entertaining. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would guess that serious Holmsians will hate it, but taken on its own terms as a fun film it's admirable and gets a whole hearted five stars from me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Slick,Shlock, 21 May 2012
I never thought Robert Downey Jnr could surpass the great British actors who have played the part. To my total surprise the first Guy Ritchie adaptation was superb. A Game of Shadows has taken his vision further, much to my delight! A must see, and then watch again, and again.What a great sequel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes Triple Play, 17 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The movie I saw in the cinema and enjoyed - wanted to buy a Triple Play which is usually Blu-ray DVD and a Digital Copy from iTunes - This was not stated in the title on amazon but the digital copy is in fact an ULTRAVIOLET digital copy and will not play in iTunes will also not play for me on my Mac and I am sending tonnes of e-mails answering lots of stupid questions and still have no working digital copy for my other devices both Apple and non apple! - Were it an iTunes download it would be playable and streamable to all my devices - Ultraviolet does not work for me and amazon should have made it clear it was an Ultraviolet copy - I would have just bought the DVD then!!
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows - Triple Play (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy)[Region Free]
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68 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary", said he., 16 Dec 2011
By 
In 2009s Sherlock Holmes, director Guy Richie took Arthur Conan Doyle's Victorian sleuth and completely re-invented him as an action hero for a modern audience, shocking purists the world over. There were fist fights, endless banter with his faithful compatriot Dr. Watson and silly disguises galore. I liked it immediately. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows goes one step further, taking the same formula from the first film and cranking up the volume, pace and budget.

This is certainly not the Holmes we know from Conan Doyle's classic stories. There are similarities of course; his brilliant mind, his keen skills of observation, his arrogance and his experimentation with various substances that Conan Doyle's books allude to. But Conan Doyle's Holmes would never have been pursued by soldiers through a German forest while being shelled with mortar fire. I for one am glad for this `re-imagining'. We've seen plenty of Sherlock Holmes TV adaptations in the past (the best being the BBC's current adaptation, the excellent `Sherlock'), but this is a very different animal, an actioner with a huge sense of fun and adventure, not intended to be true to Conan Doyle's books in any way. The two films together represent what is surely by far and away the best spell in Richie's career as a film director.

The plot, some elements of which are drawn (so very loosely) from `The Final Problem', is almost inconsequential to the enjoyment of the film, but involves a scheme by Holmes' arch nemesis Professor Moriarty to start a war in Europe with a campaign of murders and bombings in France and Germany, his motive being profit from his investment in a huge factory developing new artillery and munitions. In the meanwhile Holmes is struggling to adapt to the prospect of a life solving mysteries and beating up crooks on his own, as Dr. Watson is about to marry Mary (Kelly Reilly) and submit to a peaceful life as a family man. But will he give up a life of excitement so easily?

Thankfully all of the main cast members that made the first film such a joy to watch are here, plus a few new additions; the excellent Stephen Fry as Holmes' self satisfied brother Mycroft, Jared Harris makes a creepy and malevolent Moriarty and The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo's Noomi Rapace appears as a gypsy fortune-teller. The chemistry between the leads Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law is still electric and their double act is thoroughly engaging. Many were originally sceptical at the casting of Downey Jr. as such a quintessentially British hero, but he has really made the role his own and puts in another highly charismatic turn, with superb comedic timing.

Richie's direction is slick, and he clearly has a great production team behind him. The action scenes are frequent and thrilling, particularly an escape from a German arms factory while chased by German soldiers and an inventive shoot-out on a moving steam train. One thing I particularly enjoy about these films is the picture of Victorian times as one of great wonder; a time when amazing advances were being made in the world of science, technology and industry and Richie never misses an opportunity to throw in some new gadget or weapon.

Shortness of plot is the films most glaring drawback, and there is not really much of a case for Holmes to `solve'; the plot is more `007' than `Sherlock Holmes'. Perhaps a little sprinkle of Conan Doyle here wouldn't have gone amiss. Jared Harris is a little underused as Moriarty until the final reel, and the same might be said of Noomi Rapace, whose presence becomes less noticeable as the film draws to its conclusion. But these are fairly minor gripes and actually barely noticeable until subsequent reflection.

It's not Holmes as we know him, for sure, but you'll struggle to find a film that is more raucously entertaining. Is it as good as 2009s Sherlock Holmes? I'll have to see it again to decide, but it's marvellous escapist entertainment nonetheless. I enjoyed it tremendously, and can't recommend it enough. 7.5/10.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been so much better..., 18 Aug 2014
When I went to see the first Sherlock Holms film, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I feared for a dumb Hollywood remaining with big actions scenes and holms reduced to a sexy action hero. While the film did have big effects and action, it also had a well written story and a wonderful performance and characterisation from Robert Downey Jr as Sherlock.

Its sequel, A Game of Shadows, however, is far closer to what I originally fear.

Apart from an interesting twist at the beginning, the plot was pitifully weak. Perhaps it’s because I have been watching too much of the BBC’s modern day version of Sherlock, but I expected a well throughout, clever story with twists and turns along with more ‘aha!’ revelations. What we got was a simply narrative, with little in terms of impressive ‘deductions’ or wits. At the end, I could not help but to think that Moriarty’s plan was too basic and ‘James Bond’ like, and not really worthy of such a great character. It also lacked in emotion for most part, though again that could just be me comparing it to Sherlock. The fact the film seems to jump across the globe didn’t help ether, as it served little purpose. I missed the Victorian streets of London early on.

There is plenty of action to behold, and while impressive some (like the chase through the forest) go on for far too long.

The cast is the highlight, with Robert Downey Jr stealing every scene he is in while Jared Harris makes for an interesting, if horrifically miss-used, Moriarty. The best scenes in the film are simply involving these two actors when they are alone, confronting each other mentally rather than physically for the most part. Jude Law is alright as Watson, although I have never found his adaption of the character very likable. Noomi Rapace is a good actress, but her character Simza fails at being a memorable heroine. I enjoyed Steven Fry as Mycroft, even if he was played for laughs more than anything.

In the end, it’s an alright action film, but one that’s not as smart as it thinks it is, and had the potential to be alot better.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes as Clown., 3 Aug 2014
Why has this iconic literary role been given to American actor Robert Downey Jr.?
No doubt he looks very handsome, and his speech is bubbling, good enough to animate something,
but I was looking for competent evidence in his development to justify this exact choice,
and this remains a mystery. The only reason I find is publicity for profit.
And I wish there was a big share of it going to the British Sherlock Holmes Trust to support the originators.

As for story, the intelligence expected from the classical Sherlock Holmes has been replaced with many action fight scenes on the background of an exaggerated world apocalypse scenario. The many disguises of the filmic Holmes intended comic look rather clownish, and his sense for prediction lacks sense. If the movie makers were conscientious, there would better be no continuation.

On a side note, to my mind the label stuck on the biography of RDJ is innocent victim of childhood circumstances. However, the streets of London may not be a reputable home for him, unless he underlined his "rebirth" with some charity work in relation. I wish you well dear RDJ.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Dip In The Holmes Market, 15 May 2012
By 
R. King "raking" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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Watched this last night and although I enjoyed it and it is in no way a bad film, I found that Guy has this time gone all out with the special effects, photography and action but forgotten one fairly important ingredient - a good story!! The plot was very thin and only served as a backing for the action. I also found the slo-mo a bit tiresome after a while, even though it was well done. Still prefer the first movie and hope that if he does a third one he cuts out some of the flashy photography and brings back a bit more in the way of a story. Enjoyable but could have been so much better IMHO.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars bigger and grander in every way, but no mystery to be solved, 6 Jun 2012
By 
bizmandan (staffordshire, england) - See all my reviews
Holmes and Watson are back on the case in director Guy Ritchie's sequel to the 2009 hit Sherlock Holmes . But while the stakes, humour, and style of that first instalment are all ramped-up considerably in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows , the mystery here isn't nearly as compelling, and, from the back-alley brawl that gets the action underway, Ritchie compensates for a fairly pedestrian script with total stylistic overkill.

Aside from Downey Jr.'s eccentric interpretation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's brilliant detective and Ritchie's vitalizing direction, one of the primary factors that made 2009's Sherlock Holmes such fun was the "supernatural" angle of the mystery. Though anyone even remotely familiar with the Holmes mythology likely knew from the very beginning that the more fantastical aspects of the story weren't as otherworldly as they initially appeared, the fact that we never quite knew what Holmes was up against made watching him piece together the puzzle all the more intriguing. Here, Holmes engages in a high-stakes battle of wits against his most-famous nemesis, Professor Moriarty a malevolent genius played with diabolical relish by Jared Harris. The problem is that we know precisely who Holmes is up against from the moment we see a photo of Moriarty pinned to the detective's wall (directly connecting him to a series of suspicious deaths) early in the film, and thanks to some not-so-subtle clues dropped early on, it doesn't take long to figure out precisely what Moriarty is planning. So while Moriarty's plan may be much more destructive and grander in scale than that of Lord Blackwood's scheme from the original, it sorely lacks the enigmatic punch that kept us guessing throughout that first film and leaves us with little to do but laugh at Downey Jr.'s over-the-top performance.

When Watson has his first encounter with Holmes in the sequel, Holmes' befuddled landlady Mrs. Hudson reveals that the detective has been sustaining himself on a steady diet of coffee, cocoa leaves, and booze. Immediately after, we see Holmes slurp a glass of embalming fluid with barely a flinch. And while these explanations may go a long way in justifying Holmes' heightened idiosyncrasies, Downey Jr.'s cartoonish flourishes threaten to become the film's greatest distraction, rather than its greatest asset. Admittedly, this has quite a bit to do with the script as well (in the back-alley brawl that opens the film, it appears that Holmes has actually become a psychic rather than simply a skilled observer), and ultimately it's the buddy chemistry between wild-eyed Downey Jr. and staunch straight man Jude Law, not the main mystery, that rescues Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows from being a complete disaster. Sadly, co-star Noomi Rapace is all but wasted in thankless supporting role, though Stephen Fry still manages to get a few big laughs as Sherlock's brother Mycroft Holmes, who proves that quirkiness runs in the family.

With the cinematographer giving Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows an even richer visual texture than the first film and composer Hans Zimmer appropriately expanding the themes to a more majestic scale, it's easy to get caught up in the style and action of this sequel and overlook the intricate yet clumsy screenplay. I really do think this is where the film is let down, it's almost as if the director is trying to constantly distract the audience with these 300 -esque special effects. Perhaps if Ritchie can keep the core team that worked on this film together but recruit some new screenwriters who actually know how to craft a satisfying mystery, there's a chance of turning the Holmes films into a successful trilogy. Otherwise, it may be wise to leave well enough alone. But no matter what, something tells me that Hollywood is going to flog this cash cow for everything it is worth.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Digital Copy - Beware!!, 24 May 2012
As mentioned in some of the other reviews, if you buy the Digital Copy - it is NOT compatible with iTunes, and to download it you HAVE TO register with Flixster and Ultraviolet. You also have to install their applications so you can then watch it. If you want to watch it on other devices, you need to download it again to each device, or you can stream it (which isn't why I bought the triple pack!).

Fast customer service from Ultravoilet, but could not help. Won't buy Ultraviolet digital copies again as I don't want to be a Flixster member.
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Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows [DVD] [2012]
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