While the cinema releases are still limited, ESP’s film reviewer Gavin Miller turns his attention to the small screen to see what’s worth a watch…
This likeable twist on Sherlock Holmes sees the limelight turn to his younger sister in this big-budget Netflix crime-adventure.
There’s no doubt this is a movie vehicle for breakout Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown – who plays fan favourite Eleven in the series – who shows her acting range after starring in the awful Godzilla: King of the Monsters.
Based upon Nancy Springer’s book, The Case of the Missing Marquess: An Enola Holmes Mystery, Brown stars as the title character who has been single-handedly brought up, educated, and even trained in martial arts, by her mother Eudoria (Oscar-nominee Helena Bonham Carter) after her elder brothers Mycroft (The Hunger Games’ Sam Claflin) and Sherlock (Henry ‘Superman’ Cavill) left home years earlier.
But when her mother mysteriously disappears from the Holmes homestead on the morning of her sixteenth birthday – and her brothers return with eldest Mycroft intending to send her to a girls ‘finishing school’ – she runs away and sets off on her own super-sleuthing adventure in Victorian-era England, that takes her to London to try and find her.
Along the way she bumps into wealthy and similarly-aged Viscount Tewkesbury (Paddington 2’s Louis Partridge), who’s being pursued across the capital by Burn Gorman’s (The Dark Knight Rises) hitman Linthorn – with the boy’s uncle wanting him killed so he can claim his estate – in a sub-plot that blends into the main script, as she tries to stay a step ahead of her pursuing brothers.
With some clever modern story-telling via Brown’s Enola talking in the third-person and some noteworthy Victorian-era inspired ‘cutaways’ – there’s no doubting that Netflix have spared no expense once again to push out another polished product.
Even though Brown’s English accent fluctuates once or twice, she does an impressive job as the young Holmes sibling, and is aided by a strong supporting cast and serviceable narrative.
It does tail a way a touch at the end, with a slightly underwhelming climax – but by then Brown has already impressed enough to leave her mark on proceedings.
Just like with some other Netflix movies that have potential for sequels (like the Chris Hemsworth-headlining Extraction) this is definitely noteworthy-enough to be put in that category – as Brown (who also produces this) shows she’s got her own prerogative when it comes to expanding her burgeoning CV.
ESP Rating: 3.5/5
Cast: Millie Bobby Brown, Henry Cavill, Sam Claflin, Louis Partridge, Burn Gorman, Adeel Akhtar, Frances De La Tour, Fiona Shaw, Susan Wokoma, Hattie Morahan & Helena Bonham Carter
Running Time: 2 Hrs 3 Mins
Director: Harry Bradbeer