Enola Holmes 2 Review

Last Updated on November 9, 2022

Plot: Now a detective-for-hire like her infamous brother, Enola Holmes takes on her first official case to find a missing girl, as the sparks of a dangerous conspiracy ignite a mystery that requires the help of friends — and Sherlock himself — to unravel.

Review: When Enola Holmes debuted in 2020, it represented one of the better Netflix feature films. Quality production values, a solid screenplay, and some pretty impressive action sequences made the film more than a teen-centric mystery and more of a worthy showcase for Millie Bobby Brown in a franchise all her own. With the credit sequence all but guaranteeing a sequel, Enola Holmes 2 arrives and exceeds the original film in virtually every way. With a bigger and more intricate plot, bigger stakes, and potential for countless more sequels, Enola Holmes 2 is one of the best Netflix original films and a rip-roaring good time that could have been a big screen hit.

Enola Holmes 2 works well enough as a story that you do not need to have seen the first film to enjoy it. Bringing back many characters from the original, the story starts with Enola (Millie Bobby Brown) starting her own detective agency to distinguish herself from her far more famous older brother, Sherlock (Henry Cavill). Distancing herself from any romantic entanglements with Lord Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge), Enola is drawn into the case of a missing girl (Hannah Dodd) who worked at the Lyons Match Factory. When Enola herself becomes a suspect in a murder, she must employ all of her skills, as well as those of Sherlock and her mother Eudoria (Helena Bonham-Carter), to solve the case. With Inspector Lestrade (Adeel Akhtar) and Superintendent Grail (David Thewlis) on her trail, Enola is in for one hell of an adventure.

While Enola Holmes 2 reunites director Harry Bradbeer and screenwriter Jack Thorne from the original, this movie feels far stronger in every way. Taking a cue from the source novels written by Nancy Springer, this film is an original story based on the true events of the 1888 matchgirls’ strike in England. As a major event in labor rights, you would expect that might turn this into a preachy message movie, but Thorne keeps the story intricate and full of clues and red herrings that keep the mystery intriguing while still feeling like a classic Sir Arthur Conan Doyle tale. It also helps that Sherlock Holmes plays a far larger presence in this movie. Henry Cavill is excellent as the elder Holmes and we get to see him do a lot more with the character as well as fostering a relationship with his sister. Cavill and Brown both have obvious screen presence and play off of each other very well.

The large cast of characters here keeps the story chugging along. While Sam Claflin’s Mycroft does not appear in this film, Thorne manages to include many more elements from the original Sherlock Holmes canon which will delight fans of the character and broadens the scope of this fictional world. What remains intact from the first film is the cheeky use of Enola breaking the fourth wall and talking directly to the audience. Millie Bobby Brown has a lot of fun playing this character and she gives Enola a personality that makes her incredibly likable and someone to root for. There are, of course, the requisite eye-rolling moments as Enola’s romantic aspirations conflict with her professional ones, but these never detract from the story. In fact, Enola Holmes 2 never feels like a movie for teens or younger viewers with the subject matter and action on screen not feeling too distant from Guy Ritchie’s testosterone-heavy take on Holmes.

Clocking in at 130 minutes, Enola Holmes 2 never feels that long but does pack in a lot of different locations. I did find myself trying to keep track of the various plot threads and suspects which occasionally becomes overwhelming. Of course, when dealing with a story like this, the more suspects the merrier and it never comes across as padded or overstuffed. The increased screen time for Sherlock does not mean that this film is any less worthy of the titled Enola Holmes 2, but it does veer very close to potentially starting conversations on a spin-off for Cavill to headline himself. If a third film gets made, and by all accounts, the credit sequence here leans in that direction, it would need to be very careful to balance the attention on Enola versus her brother. Otherwise, it may get dangerously close to a three-hour running time.

Enola Holmes 2 is a great mystery that is full of action, humor, and a great cast of characters. With impressive production values and a pair of stellar leading performances from Millie Bobby Brown and Henry Cavill, this sequel makes the case for Enola to continue solving mysteries for as many sequels as these actors are willing to be on the case. With some creative reinventions of classic Sherlock Holmes characters and a unique lens on true historical events, Enola Holmes 2 is better than the original and may be one of the best Sherlock Holmes movies to date. Despite not being available on the big screen this weekend, Enola Holmes 2 is the best blockbuster you could choose to watch.

8

Source: JoBlo.com

About the Author

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Alex Maidy has been a JoBlo.com editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. A Rotten Tomatoes-approved critic and a member of Chicago Indie Critics, Alex has been JoBlo.com's primary TV critic and ran columns including Top Ten and The UnPopular Opinion. When not riling up fans with his hot takes, Alex is an avid reader and aspiring novelist.