Critics Consensus: Guy Ritchie's directorial style might not be quite the best fit for an update on the legendary detective, but Sherlock Holmes benefits from the elementary appeal of a strong performance by Robert Downey, Jr. Critics Consensus: Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is a good yarn thanks to its well-matched leading men but overall stumbles duplicating the well-oiled thrills of the original.
Critics Consensus: Mr. Holmes focuses on the man behind the mysteries, and while it may lack Baker Street thrills, it more than compensates with tenderly wrought, well-acted drama. Synopsis: Legendary detective Sherlock Holmes and his partner Doctor Watson return for a comedic take on their classic literary partnership, as...
Critics Consensus: Nola Holmes brings a breath of fresh air to Baker Street -- and leaves plenty of room for Millie Bobby Brown to put her effervescent stamp on a franchise in waiting. Having been portrayed on screen in excess of two hundred and fifty times, producing any list of film titles featuring Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes (who first appeared in print in 1887) is no easy task.
Billy Wilder’s (who directed and co-wrote) film outing starring Robert Stephenson as Holmes and Colin Blakely as Watson is something of a cult favorite. The plot comprises two separate stories the main one of which involves the apparent sighting of the Loch Ness monster and the covert building of a submarine.
Whilst the plot(s) sound interesting, and the performances are certainly fitting, the finished article is understandably a little disjointed and veers too far into parody. An interesting addition to the list as the lead character, a widowed millionaire, (played by George C. Scott) actually only believes himself to be Sherlock Holmes.
Based on the play by James Goldman (who also wrote the screenplay), the story focuses more on the relationship/interaction between the two leads as ‘Holmes’ follows a series of impossible clues. The psychological spin and Holmes’ search for a ‘Moriarty of the mind’ makes the film in some ways comparable to elements of The Seven-Per-Cent Solution.
Whilst a more recent Netflix screening apparently features this scene but still runs short (91mins) compared to 96min televised versions from the1980s. Famous mouse detective Basil is assisted by Dr Dawson to foil a plot by arch villain Rattan to take over England using a mechanical queen.
Basil in the film is voiced by Barrie Ingham with Vincent Price well suited to supplying the tones for arch villain Rattan. It followed on from the financial disaster that had been the previous year’s The Black Cauldron, Basil the Great Mouse Detective was a thankful success at the box office, despite the failure of its predecessor leading to the slashing of its own budget during production.
However, regardless of the engaging plot, the treats for both Holmes and film fans, fine voice performances and a score from Henry Mancini, this final traditional cell animation from Disney does betray itself with evidence of financial caution and corner cutting. Although the thrilling final ‘Big Ben’ clock tower action sequence (possibly drawing from 1979’the Thirty Nine Steps) does feature Disney’s first use of CGI animation (The Black Cauldron was however the first to be released) as part of its impressive moving clock cog scenes, this does leave one to speculate if more CGI had been planned in with the original budget.
The teaser trailers for director Guy Ritchie’s first Holmes film which featured Sherlock stripped to the waist bare-knuckle boxing, and then describing via narration and slow-motion replay the effects his blows were having on his opponent, sent purists into fits of disdain. However, the finished film starring Robert Downey Jr with Jude Law as Watson is a commendable production and enjoyable Victorian adventure.
Rachel McAdams also features as a love interest and former adversary for Holmes, named and developed from Irene Adler the woman who outwits him in Conan Doyle’s A Scandal in Bohemia. The film was followed by a sequel ‘ Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows’ in 2011, this arguably lacked the same balance of action and plot and weighed too heavily on stunts and spectacle.
Although, in a story with some enjoyably gruesome hallucinations, the opening one of which attracted a series of complaints when the BBC screened it on UK TV one evening in the run up to Christmas, just how young its intended audience were at the time is questionable. Visuals aside, there is some genuine character and depth to the script, the young Holmes of this story possesses all the powers of deduction fans are familiar with but here he is frequently emotional and impulsive with the outcome of a romantic subplot going someway to explain the cool nature of the older Sherlock.
When a bored Holmes eagerly takes the case of Gabrielle Valley after an attempt on her life, the search for her missing husband leads to Loch Ness and the legendary monster. Sherlock Holmes investigates a series of deaths at a castle with each foretold by the delivery of orange pips to the victims.
In a Manhattan psychiatric hospital a man, convinced he is Sherlock Holmes, is treated by a female doctor who happens to be named Watson. Sherlock Holmes investigates a series of so-called “pajama suicides”.
He knows the female villain behind them is as cunning as Moriarty and as venomous as a spider. Detective Sherlock Holmes and his stalwart partner Watson engages in a battle of wits and brawn with a nemesis whose plot is a threat to all of England.
Sherlock Holmes investigates the murders committed by Jack the Ripper and discovers a conspiracy to protect the killer. The master sleuth hunts his archenemy, Professor Moriarty, who is planning the crime of the century.
To treat his friend's cocaine induced delusions, Watson lures Sherlock Holmes to Sigmund Freud. A mysterious blonde woman kills one of a psychiatrist's patients, and then goes after the high-class call-girl who witnessed the murder.
Actress Sarah Bernhardt performs at the city's Municipal Theater, captivating the local audience enthralled by French culture. With hundreds of movies and series already crowding the Sherlock Holmes canon, it takes expert sleuthing to determine which rank above the rest.
The Sherlock Holmes Society of London’s Roger Johnson called the newly restored flick “a wonderful treat.” The first small-screen American take on Conan Doyle’s stories starred Ronald Howard as Holmes and H. Marion Crawford as Watson.
Multiple Shylockian admitted to having a soft spot for this “hilarious” reimagining that flips the personalities of its dynamic detective duo, featuring Ben Kingsley’s Watson as the brain and Michael Caine’s Holmes as the bumbling student. For one of the most recent big-screen adaptations, Linger paid particular kudos to Jude Law, who plays “one of the very best Watson sever” opposite Robert Downey Jr.'s Holmes.
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Both workplace comedies feature charming characters that should have no trouble winning your heart, as they navigate a chaotic working life and their evolving personal relationships. That’s not the end of it either as Amy Peeler’s universally adored Parks and Recreation will also join Netflix UK next Monday, adding yet another hilarious viewing option to the growing list.
Of course, if you’re in the mood of something inspirational in the same vein as Cheer, brand new factual series We Are: The Brooklyn Saints provides a look at a youth football team and their selfless coaches. Carroll leads the large ensemble cast for most of the series, with hilarious supporting roles for the likes of John Kaminski, Rain Wilson and Mindy Baling.
Ugly Betty star America Herrera plays the lead role of Amy Sosa, a single mother who manages a branch of Cloud 9, a fictional chain of mega stores. In this series, which returned for a second season in 2021, 10 master glassblowers compete to create a staggering artwork, with the chance to win a prize worth thousand.
Directed by Tiller Russell, this latest true crime documentary series focuses not on Richard Ramirez, the serial killer who attained a cult following after his capture, but instead on his many victims. The four-part series charts this “iconic L.A. real-life horror story,” following the convicted Ramirez’s killing spree in Lose Angeles and San Francisco until he was apprehended in 1985.
Starring Irene Abuela, this Mexican crime drama series follows a family vying for control of their tequila company, Monarch, worth billions. Adult daughter Ana María (Abuela) has been abroad for the past two decades (due to a mysterious, bloody reason), but she returns to Mexico at her father’s request.
This dark comedy, which first aired on BBC One back in 2019, stars creator Daisy Haggard (Episodes, Breeders) as Mini Matheson, an optimistic 30-something who returns to her Kent family home after serving 18 years in prison. With a stellar cast including the likes of Adeel Akhtar (Killing Eve), Geraldine James (Sherlock Holmes), Jo Martin (Doctor Who) and Liam Williams (Lad hood), Back to Life is a captivating tragicomedy featuring a phenomenal performance from the incredibly underrated Haggard.
Some of the greatest songwriters on the planet join host Rishikesh Airway and Oscar-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville to deconstruct one of their finest songs. Based on the book by Son Charaipotra and Danielle Clayton, Tiny Pretty Things is set in the world of an elite ballet academy and charts the rise and fall of young adults who live far from their homes, each standing on the verge of greatness or ruin.
The Archer School of Ballet in Chicago is a haven for an array of dancers: rich and poor, from north and south, and a range of backgrounds. The show runner is Canadian Queer as Folk director Michael McLennan and 10-part Tiny Pretty Things is destined to be another hit for Netflix, especially for a younger audience.
Netflix has long-established itself as an expert when it comes to true crime limited series, and the latest in that regard is this four-episode documentary about a scandal involving the French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn in 2011, a former IMF managing director who was accused of multiple serious sexual assaults starting in 2011. As you’d expect from a Netflix true crime documentary, numerous subjects are interviewed as the case is examined in great detail, with viewers largely left to come to their own conclusions based on the evidence included in the program.
The fourth season of this raunchy animated comedy arrived at Netflix earlier this month with its stellar voice cast including Nick Roll, John Guyana, Jason Mantzoukas, Jordan Peele and Maya Rudolph reprising their roles for another outrageous outing. With guest stars such as Paul Gigawatts, John Oliver, Than die Newton, Seth Rogan, Kristen Bell and David Thesis popping up throughout, this crude comedy is definitely worth binging.
Each episode is roughly 30-minutes long and focuses on a different sport, with some of those featured including competitive cheese rolling, frog jumping, and even fantasy hairstyling. The series tells the story of Mel (Alexandra Breckenridge) a nurse practitioner who arrives in Virgin River looking for a fresh start after leaving her life in Los Angeles behind.
Her move doesn’t quite go exactly as planned though, as she finds herself trapped in a love triangle with all sorts of drama ensuing as a result, while she continues to try and make the small town her home. The show revolves around the fictional Samuel Kerr talent agency and its four agents Andrea, Mathias, Gabriel, and Marlette, who each attempt to defend their vision of the business.
In a twist reminiscent of The Americans, the pair of undercover agents, Bob Clemens (Tom Was) and Kim de Rooij (Anna Driver), pose as a couple, and begin living at the camping ground where their target spends his weekends. Big Of’ House of Fun is a new sketch comedy series that marks their first foray into streaming television and critics have heaped praise on the venture, which includes satire, parody, and even comedic musical numbers.
Legendary talk show host David Letterman is back to chat to some of the biggest names in showbiz in the third season of his Netflix series My Next Guest Needs No Introduction. From music sensation Lizzy and ground-breaking comic Dave Chappelle, to Marvel star Robert Downey Jr and TV personality extraordinaire Kim Kardashian West, the series features interviews with some of the most relevant names in pop culture, conducted by the seasoned Letterman who isn’t afraid to ask the hard-hitting questions whilst maintaining the show’s humorous atmosphere.
Season two of the BAFTA Award-winning dark comedy hits Netflix, with Alyssa (Jessica Garden, The Lobster) still dealing with the fallout of the events of the first series. The second series sees the introduction of the new character of Bonnie, played by BIFA-winning Naomi Jackie (Lady Macbeth, Star Wars: Episode IX), an outsider with a troubled past and a mysterious connection to Alyssa.
A Rotten Tomatoes critique says of season two: “What it lacks in urgency it makes up for in character development, diving deep into the darkest creases of the leading pair’s memories to emerge a darkly funny meditation on love and trauma.” The eight-part Swedish series is the story of a career-driven consultant and married mother of two, Sophie, who takes on a new challenge: to update an old publishing house, which is where she meets a young IT wiz Max.
The impressive cast included early roles for Naomi Harris and James McEvoy while the series attracted significant praise from critics at the time of its broadcast, hailed as a must-watch piece of television. Determined to protect her people the Fey and save them from the persecution of the Red Paladins, Time teams up with a young mercenary, the sell sword Arthur (played by Devon Terrell), and together they seek out enchanter Merlin and deliver a mysterious sword.
Set in the 1890s New York, the first season of the period drama sees Laszlo attempt to solve a series of brutal ritualistic child murders. The makers of The Haunting of Hill House have created a brand-new series, this time based on Henry James’ classic novella The Turn of the Screw.
Hill House alumnus Victoria Peretti plays American Au pair Dani, who is hired to look after the Win grave children of creepy English country estate Bly Manor. The legendary Bruce Campbell returns to the role of Ash Williams for this successor to Sam Rail’s Evil Dead trilogy.
As you would expect, this is a firmly tongue-in-cheek affair that sees Ash team up with two fellow department store employees, Pablo and Kelly, to take on all manner of terrifying ghouls. Those looking for a Halloween-themed binge-watch that doesn’t take itself too seriously will be well-served here, while die-hard followers of Rail’s original saga will simply be thrilled to see Campbell back on top form.
Recently, Netflix has snapped up the rights, giving it a new home and renewing Cobra Kai for a fourth season (before the third has even debuted). The fan favorite show is a successor to the original Karate Kid film series, set 34 years later and reintroducing Johnny Lawrence (William Aka) as he opens his own dojo.
Over 20 years since the show wrapped up NBC and CBS, Netflix brought us 12 new episodes have been made featuring unexplained events from all over the world. The psychological thriller, which is set in Northern Ireland, stars Gillian Anderson as Detective Superintendent Stella Gibson, who has been drafted from the Metropolitan Police to catch a serial killer, played by Jamie Dorian.
The show originally aired between 2013 and 2016 on BBC Two (and RTE in Ireland) and won significant acclaim, being long-listed for best drama at the National Television Awards for all three of its series. This utterly brilliant Canadian sitcom recently took home a suitcase full of Emmy Awards, smashing the record for most wins in a single season for a comedy.
Elliot Page and Mary J Blige star in this fantasy series set in alternate universe, adapted from comics written by My Chemical Romance singer Gerard Way. Packed with laughs, surprising twists and poignant moments of drama, Misfits’ success can be largely explained by its central premise: it followed a group of young offenders serving community service as a strange electrical storm gifts them all special abilities.
Executive produced by Raphael Bob-Waksberg, Tuna & Bertie struggled to escape the long shadow cast by BoJack Horseman upon release, making it an underrated gem in Netflix’s animated line-up. Sharing the same talking animal aesthetic and adult humor as its more prolific counterpart, the series explores the chaotic friendship between two 30-year-old women at very different stages in their life.
It’s a classic odd couple pairing that really pops thanks to some great voice work and creative animation, which delivers sight gags in abundance. Good Omens pals David Pennant and Michael Sheen play exaggerated versions of themselves in this series of quick-hit 15-minute episodes, filmed in lockdown.
A BBC/Netflix co-production that aired earlier this year in the UK, Girl/Heidi (translated as Duty/Shame) is a masterful and sprawling thriller set between London and Tokyo, which went down a treat with critics and viewers. This one might be an acquired taste, but those who like dark fantasy with a distinct B-movie spin might well find themselves engrossed by the weird world of Hemlock Grove.
While many sitcoms opt for warm and cuddly humor, sometimes a bit of cynicism acts as the perfect palate cleanser, and It’s Always Sunny has plenty to go around. The first series of this offbeat comedy introduces narcissistic bar owners Dennis, Mac, Charlie and Dee, their woefully skewed moral compasses and extremely unhealthy friendship.
Then Netflix jumped in, and it went from a cult show in the UK to a global phenomenon that attracts huge-name guest stars from Jon Hamm and Bryce Dallas Howard to Andrew Scott and Miley Cyrus. Paying homage to a 1980s Spielberg inspired world of walkie-talkies and Chopper bikes, the Duffer brothers’ Stranger Things is one of the biggest hits ever to be created by Netflix.
For its first original sitcom, Netflix went to legendary actress and writer Tina Fey, who dreamt up this delightfully odd story with her 30 Rock collaborator Robert Warlock. After being abducted by a cult leader, Kimmy Schmidt (Ellie Keeper) spent 15 years in an underground bunker with three fellow abductees, believing the Earth had been reduced to a nuclear wasteland.
While the premise may initially sound a little dark, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is a comedy through and through, with the same zany sense of humor that made Fey’s previous series such a hit. It tells the true story of the Central Park Five, five black and Hispanic teens who were wrongfully convicted of a rape that took place in New York City in 1989.
Sabrina the Teenage Witch was a huge hit in the 1990s when the Archie comic of the same name was brought to life by Melissa Joan Hart in the lead role. Originally conceived as a companion series to Riverdale, the show eventually got a life of its own when it moved to Netflix and began telling the story of a half-witch, half-mortal and her sometimes challenging existence.
The series, which began in 2015, stars Coal as Tracey Gordon, a 24-year-old religious virgin who is desperate to have sex in order to avoid becoming like her uptight oldest sister Cynthia (Susan Dodoma). With acclaimed talent behind the camera too, in the form of BAFTA-winning writer Hugo Black (who also gave us The Honorable Woman starring Maggie Gyllenhaal), this is a classy eight-part drama tackling the prosecution of international war crimes and the thorny issue of the West’s relationship with Africa.
Back when Netflix was desperately trying to prove to the world that its original dramas were worth watching, they needed a series to follow the success of House of Cards and to keep the momentum going. That series was Orange Is the New Black, an addictive ensemble drama set in a women’s prison, following naïve, middle-class Piper German (Taylor Schilling) as she embarks on a 15-month sentence for moving drug money.
David Fischer’s gloomy serial killer drama didn’t quite make it to the water cooler when it first arrived, but as with many on-demand shows, its slow-building intrigue gripped enough people for Netflix to renew it for a second season. The show follows soft-spoken FBI agent Holden Ford (Jonathan Goff) and his gruff partner Bill Tench (Holt McCall any) as they tour the USA interviewing the nation’s most heinous serial killers.