Did you perhaps ever think while watching ‘Fleabag’, ”this but at the end of 1800s”? Mixing and mashing a detective story similar to Holmes adaptations with a British costume dramedy, Millie Bobby Brown plays the titular character of Enola Holmes. She is the teenage sister of Sherlock (Henry Cavill) and Mycroft (Sam Claflin), who both arrive to Enola’s home to take care of her after their mother (Helena Bonham Carter) has disappeared on Enola’s 16th birthday. Enola and Sherlock set out to find the mother, both on their own, while Mycroft wants to send Enola to finishing school after years of ”home-schooling”. There’s a couple mysteries to solve along the way that aren’t all that interesting but amusing cast and directorial quirks get you through them joyfully.
Aforementioned directorial quirks tie directly into the ‘Fleabag’ comparison since Harry Bradbeer was the helmer on both of the projects. Both main characters break the fourth wall at same moments by either talking to the camera or just giving a small stare here or there and because it’s the same exact thing, it’s equally as great and effective tool to use. Enola Holmes as a whole has a lot of franchise potential (I wouldn’t certainly mind another one of these) so one of the things that would be good to implement is to find something unique to the fourth wall breaks. Something to draw from would be the costuming in this one since it plays into the many costume changes of period films, but it also does something different by breaking them down with fourth wall breaks as well as using both men’s and women’s clothing.
Even with having likes of Cavill, Bonham Carter and Claflin to act against, Bobby Brown commands the screens and scenes in a role tailor-made for her. ‘Godzilla 2’ didn’t turn out to be her superstar-making role after the ‘Stranger Things’ fame but here comes just that as it’s age appropriate, clever and, you know, British. Her performance is really the glue that keeps the story elements somewhat together. The film has a major issue in the mystery department because the solving of it all is merely an empty thought while the payoff at the end is a dud. Lacking the excitement overall is what makes the runtime a bit too much, it all could’ve been resolved in 90-100 minutes for better outcome. Franchise potential is evident and a second thing to improve would be the main mystery of the movie, that paired with added uniqueness and Bobby Brown’s star power would make only sky to be the limit.
Smileys: Millie Bobby Brown, directing, costume design
Frowneys: Story, runtime
If Cher would do a live set from home during this pandemic, it should be called Cher-locked Enola at Home.