I have always been a fan of the Sherlock Holmes mythos. I loved the Benedict Cumberbatch series, the Robert Downey Jr. movies and the characters are iconic. I enjoy the universe.
So hearing that the universe would be expanding to include Sherlock Holmes’ sister, Enola, I was excited.
When Enola wakes up one day to find her mother Eudoria (Helena Bonham Carter) gone, she begins to investigate the reasons behind the disappearance. Her older brothers show up after being gone for years and try to force the young and wild child into a finishing school, but Enola had plans of her own, which was to find her mother.
Along the way, Enola finds herself wrapped up with another event happening in the world. A young Lord named Viscount Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge) was looking to escape from his own personal situation, which included being pursued by a bowler-hat wearing killer (Burn Gorman). Together, Enola and Viscount try to survive long enough to unravel the mystery.
Turned out that this movie is based on a series of books written in 2006 by Nancy Springer and that she created the Enola Holmes character. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle did not have another sibling officially for Sherlock than Mycroft. A sister was introduced in the Cumberbatch TV series, but that came after the books.
Millie Bobby Brown of Stranger Things fame is the lead role here and she is a wonderful choice for Enola. She is able to show her charm, confidence and strength in this role as the exceptional sister. The movie smartly leans on that charm as well, having her be the focus of the film and having her talk the audience though the film with her fourth-wall-breaking narration.
The movie was fully enjoyable and a breath of fresh air. It had a brisk pace and, even being over 2 hours, never once felt its length. The story is cleverly written and weaves the Sherlock Holmes universe into this narrative beautifully.
That would include the strong performances as Henry Cavill as Sherlock and Sam Claflin as Mycroft. Both actors were able to bring to life their versions of these iconic characters without just copying the blueprint that has come before them. Cavill, in particular, really brings Sherlock Holmes into the film in just the right manner, fitting what this film required of Sherlock without losing what makes the character amazing to begin with. I did wonder about the absence of John Watson and how that character would fit into the life of Henry Cavill’s Sherlock, but that is a minor gripe that could be easily addressed at a future time.
Still, Millie Bobby Brown is the star here, bringing another level to her career. This Netflix film is great entertainment for the whole family and can provide young girls a real role model to look up to who is smart, funny and extremely capable.