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Enola Holmes Movie Review

Nathan is a film critic and aspiring author with a true passion for the film industry & hopes his writings will help launch his careers.


I must admit, Netflix has dropped some pretty awesome content as of late, the newest being a little film called Enola Holmes. Originally, I was skeptical as Conon Doyle's books never mentioned Sherlock having a younger sister, however, I started getting excited the more I heard about it. It's based on a six-book series by Nancy Springer, stars Millie Bobby Brown as Enola, and features the ever-so-charming Henry Cavill as Sherlock. What's not to love about that?

The film follows Enola Holmes, the brilliant 16-year-old sister of famed detective Sherlock Holmes. Enola has been raised and taught by her mother all her life and awakes one morning to find her mother has vanished. All that was left behind was a mysterious box which contained seemingly random scribbles inside. Enola soon finds out that it's merely the first clue in a series of clues that will lead her to the truth of her mother's disappearance.

There's actually two mysteries in this film. As in the book on which the film is based, Enola becomes tangled in the web of Lord Tewksbury, a young lord who is on the run from a mysterious man who seems to want him dead. Enola's kind heart urges her to help him, throwing chaos into an already full cauldron.

I enjoyed the film's heart and humor. It appeals to the entire family, adults and children alike. The cases in the film aren't overly complicated but they aren't simplified either. It's a nice puzzle for the whole family to put together and there's a good message within the film that will help open the family discussions a bit more. I also liked that there's no hidden agenda. While the film does touch on the suffragette movement and gives us some good talking points, there isn't anything politically embedded in there that is meant to sway you to one side or the other. It's simply a fun, engaging film that everyone can enjoy and learn from.

The film also uniquely features fourth-wall breaks that add a level of humor to the film as well as the feeling that you're a part of the sleuthing. While fourth-wall breaks were made popular by Deadpool in both the comics and the movies, not many films and shows have been able to pull them off as nicely. Dora and the Lost City of Gold is a good example of fourth-wall breaks being more of a nuisance than a help. In Enola Holmes' case, however, they help move the story along and give you some fun engagement with the characters.

Millie Bobby Brown performed excellently in her role as Enola. After seeing her in rather dark roles (Stranger Things, Godzilla: King of Monsters), it was a real treat to see her land something as lighthearted as this. She has good range in her acting abilities and will certainly go far in her career. I just hope that she establishes herself enough in the film industry now and doesn't fade away as many child actors do when their big break is no longer popular. But, I have a feeling that Millie will be around long after Stranger Things ends.

Henry Cavill was rather dashing as Sherlock, but, he was almost wasted. Seeing as how the film centered around Enola, Henry became more of a set piece rather than a plot-device. However, the way the film ends suggests that he may play a bigger role in the sequel should there be one.

Sam Claflin, who played Mycroft Holmes, was almost a villain himself. He was snotty and more concerned with status than his own sister's desires or wants. Of course, this is set in the early 19th century so it's safe to say most men thought that way. It's realistic to the time period but I can't say I didn't want to smack him a few good times.

In conclusion, definitely give Enola Holmes a try if you're looking for a good, fun, family film or if you're like me and just love anything to do with the Holmes family. I give the film a 3.5 out of 4.

© 2020 Nathan Jasper

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