Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
2012 Olympics: The games commence with 'Sherlock' star Benedict Cumberbatch
"Sherlock" star Benedict Cumberbatch opened the 2012 Olympics with the best video no one in America saw.
Before Americans enjoyed NBC's tape-delayed spectacle and pageantry of Danny Boyle's opening ceremonies, Britons were treated to the BBC's live (imagine!), Bob Costas-free coverage.
Even better, their program launched with Cumberbatch narrating a short featurette celebrating London, "the beating heart of the nation."
Interspersed with majestic footage documenting the city's glorious and tragic history, Cumberbatch is shown hailing a cab to the Olympics stadium, where he salutes the city with a glorious exhortation:
"London is about to cry out with heart and soul."
The thespian concludes with a cheeky wink to Sherlock Holmes' -- one of London's most iconic figures -- memorable line: "The game's afoot."
"Let the games commence," Cumberbatch says, turning to the camera with grin.
Video on line.
Friday, July 27, 2012
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Comic-Con: Can CBS' Elementary and BBC's SherlockCo-Exist?
- Jul 12, 2012 11:36 PM ET
by Kate Stanhope
There's no shortage of Sherlock Holmes interpretations in the current pop culture zeitgeist.
There's the big-screen Sherlock Holmes, played by Robert Downey Jr., for two movies now and counting. There's the BBC version, featuringBenedict Cumberbatch, which just debuted its critically acclaimed second season on PBS in May. And now there's a third man entering the race: Jonny Lee Miller, who will play the famed quirky detective on CBS' upcoming dramaElementary. It may be an increasingly crowded field, but Miller & Co. sounded up for the challenge during the show's Comic-Con panel on Thursday.
"The fact that there have been so many interpretations over the years actually takes the pressure off a little bit," Miller told the crowd. "You can take what you want — what you feel hasn't been seen before ... and discover some new stuff and try to bring it to the audience."
Miller said he paid the most attention to the original source material, the books, but by pure coincidence he wound up having a second source to tap into: Sherlock star Cumberbatch, with whom Miller co-starred in the Royal National Theatre production of Frankstein. Miller acknowledged that the two talked about their similar projects, but declined to divulge exactly what was said. "We wanted to be sure that it was going to be very different, so that was the conversation that we had," Miller said. "He's been very, very supportive actually. We just discussed what a wonderful character it is."
One big way Elementary differs from its previous counterparts? The character of Watson, who for the first time will be played by a female actress, Lucy Liu. "I always think it's wonderful when people do turn things on their heads. I think [executive producer Rob Doherty] was really thinking outside the box," Liu said. "I think the gender change also creates a dynamic and a chemistry different from the films and also the BBC version."
She added: "I'm not saying it's romantic. It just gives it a little bit of a shift, a little bit of a tingle."
Does that tingle mean that Sherlock and Watson will become TV's newest will-they-or-won't-they couple? Doherty said that he hopes to keep the characters' "incredible bond" close to its original form. "It was never designed for that," he said, when asked about possible romantic tension. "It just made me laugh. What would be more trying for Sherlock Holmes than working with a Watson that's a woman?"
However, there are certain ways Elementary will overlap with its many predecessors. One serious possibility is the eventual introduction of famous supporting characters from Holmes' world, including Professor Moriarty and Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock's older brother. "We want to keep some secrets to ourselves. But it would be a great shame to do a Sherlock project and not have Moriarty appear at some point in time," Doherty said. "It's something that we will be looking at as we move through this first season." As for Mycroft's debut, he said they "might hold off on him for a little bit."
"Moving forward, we'd like to contribute our own stories and our own material to the canon," he said.
Elementary premieres on Thursday, Sept. 27 at 10/9c on CBS. Will you be tuning in?
Friday, July 20, 2012
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Friday, July 13, 2012
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
But I can't say I feel any better about the movie, and would agree with the post from yesterday about some, or most, of it's flaws.
I'm sorry, but watching it, I still do not see RDJ's as Holmes. A great actor in his own right, but not Holmes. I think the thing that bothered me the most was RDJ's tongue locked speech, and ineffectual accent, (He should have watched Duvall's Watson.), that at most times sounded drunk.
I still loved the actor who portrayed Moriarty, and Jude Law is still a good Watson, as well as the actress that did justice to Mary, but the script, with the exception of Moriarty, does not take advantage of any of these great actors. (To my surprise, I did end up liking Stephen Fry a little more as Mycroft!)
Just like the first one, it was a mad, unconnected dash through some wonderful set pieces. Instead of lingering in some of these wonderful scenes, we just hurtle through them.
The relationship between Holmes and Watson was painful to watch this time, and although RDJ's Holmes did display some wonderful emotion about losing his best friend and companion to marriage, often times it came of as twisted.
Again, like previously stated, the slow-mo was way over used.
If I am looking forward to a third installment, and I am not sure that I am, it is only because it gives them one more time to get it (or at least part of it) right.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
5 Ways SHERLOCK HOLMES 3 Can Improve on ‘A Game of Shadows’
I love sequels. No, really. I do. There’s nothing I love more than for some corporate stooge to charge me extortionate amounts of money to see the same film I first saw two years ago over again, with the only differences being the title of the film, the details on the poster and the payroll journalists comments in the trailer going from ‘Mind blowing!’ to ‘More mind blowing than the first one!’
However something got to me about Sherlock Holmes 2: A Game of Shadows, it may have been the plodding narrative, the hilariously hollow plot or humour so drainingly underwhelming that an eternity of Jason Manford gigs tickle my comedic fancy more. Therefore, under request from the weeping cinemagoers who anticipate a 3rd Sherlock Holmes (ok, this may be a lie, no-one asked me to do this) I thought I would give the producers a checklist of things to improve on for the threequel. Buckle up; this is world changing stuff right here.
When people have asked me about the second one in relation to the first I’ve done a direct comparison between how the films start. The first starts with a carriage hurtling down a bumpy London street with purpose, pace and a startling disregard for the safety of pedestrians (all in all, it’s very juicy). The second starts with the opening pages of a book, with little purpose, no pace and a regard for pedestrians safety so strong I feel like I’m preparing myself to watch a film about the dangers of Lollipop ladies in an upper middle class suburb.
This is a recurring theme throughout A Game of Shadows, where the first one was packed with pace and moved with great purpose towards its ending, the second plods through sequence by sequence with inescapable air of scriptwriters with a story, but with a brief to throw in as many set pieces as they can.
2. Give it a less hollow narrative
For those unaware, A Game of Shadows follows on from the first (well, kind of) and has Holmes chasing the now not so mysterious Dr. Moriarty across Europe as he, in possibly one of the most haphazardly handled plot developments since the Wachowski’s said ‘Yes. Yes I think two more Matrix movies will be worthwhile!’, swindles his way into arms dealership and escalates tensions between Germany and France so that he can make a swift buck in the process. Despite being a poor advertisement for the nature of capitalists it also leaves the aim of the story feeling a little dispiriting, Holmes (SPOILER ALERT) successfully averts a World War by preventing the assassination of a high ranking political official.
Brilliant! Well done Holmes! World War in 1891 is thoroughly prevented! …Oh. One happens in 1914? When the armies of Europe have managed to stockpile better weapons to kill each other with, and inherently more men died?
Hmm. I somehow think you preventing this war did the world a disservice Holmes. You’re a bit of a bastard aren’t you? Just allowing more men to die after Europe has given itself more equipment to kill each other with? Well aren’t you a saint.
3. Stop trying to be a modern action jet-setting film
Pardon me for criticising 19th century forms of transportation however when the cross continent traipsing begins and Guy Ritchie try’s to manipulate a plodding narrative into a 21st century action jet-setter of James Bond like proportions you can’t help but stifle a snort.
Ritchie fills his helicopter, greases the hinges on his panoramic camera and starts darting around the channel trying to inject some majesty into the dull narrative, however it is difficult to buy into the speed of the chase when they’re travelling in a steamer vessel moving slower than a no legged dog in quick sand. The shots of the White Cliffs of Dover don’t help the rather difficult to chew scene, as for a British audience they have been drilled into our minds to the point where we cease to be impressed and start fixating on our Year 10 Geography lessons about whether coastal erosion will become a serious difficulty for local businesses geared towards the 6 week tourist market.
4. Less slow motion
It’s strange really, a film that starts as quickly as the head procrastinator of the procrastinator society making a decision about whether to go to the ‘Sometimes annual, mainly every now and then’ procrastinator’s luncheon, gets slower as Ritchie peppers the film, potentially, more outstanding action sequences with slow motion so desperately drawn out and recurring that by the 50th time you’ve seen a bullet rip through a tree in slow motion you are compelled to either A. Scream. B. Walk out. C. Join a society of tree protectors for the prevention of bullet harm to trees. All in all the sequence is galling and sucks the life out one of the films better sequences.
5. All in all, be less sequel-y
It’s a shame, the first film was fresh, funny, pacey and original when the second was none of those, because it tried to be the first one all over again. There were no new additions to the characters or the style of narrative, it is very much a lazy rehash of the first trying to get by on Robert Downey Jr.’s best impression of Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory, but instead just ends up doing an impression of Robert Downey Jr. with a British accent so charicatured it feels like his voice coach was one of the creators of South Park.
Sequels make a lot of money on pitching to the unimaginative cinema goer who likes familiarity, but even this drags. Because this is to unimaginative, it’s too familiar. At the end of the day, it’s too much of a sequel.