Thursday, January 21, 2010

A Nightmare at the Cinema

My desire to be a hermit was reinforced by yesterday's trip to the cinema. Why is it so bloody difficult to just buy tickets for a film? Why is there no dedicated box office? Despite having arrived in what I thought was good time for a 7:30 performance, I found myself forced to queue for what seemed an eternity whilst people not only bought tickets, but also what seemed sufficient food and drink to see them through the entire winter, let alone a two hour film. I'm guessing that a large number of the people I was queueing with, like me, just wanted to buy tickets. Popcorn sales should be at a separate counter, for God's sake. Now, I know that many of you are going to point out that I could have bought the ticket in advance, on line. Indeed, I could have. But that would have meant paying an extra fee for the privilege. It's expensive enough to see a film as it is, without being stung for trying to avoid the queues which the cinema itself artificially creates. Anyway, having finally got my ticket, I found someone sitting in my allocated seat. Much 'discussion' ensued until it turned out that they were in the wrong bloody screen! I mean, if they thought they were going to watch Avatar, didn't they think it odd that they hadn't been issued with 3-D glasses? Bloody people again!

But what of the film I finally managed to see? Well, it might well have been titled Sherlock Holmes, but I doubt very much that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would have recognised any of his characters. Granted, it was set in Victorian London (very well recreated, in all its filthy glory), and it did involve a 'consulting detective' called Sherlock Holmes who, assisted by his friend Dr Watson, solves crimes which baffle the police. I'm not saying it wasn't entertaining or well made, it was. But it wasn't really a Sherlock Holmes film. That said, its attempt to reinvent Holmes as an action hero isn't as radical as the makers think. Quite a lot of the silents and early talkies featuring the character also tried to recast the character in this way. Indeed, with its plot involving an attempt by a criminal mastermind to destroy the British government, it was reminiscent of some of the World War Two set Basil Rathbone Holmes movies. Moreover, Robert Downey's choice of hat - a battered fedora - also seemed to be borrowed from the 'modernised' Rathbone films. Actually, as recently as the late 1960s there was an attempt to play Holmes as a comic strip action hero, in A Study in Terror, which even described Holmes as the 'original caped crusader' in its publicity. Getting back to Robert Downey, whilst his was an interesting and charismatic interpretation of Holmes, it didn't scream 'intellectual genius' at me. Which, after all, is what the character is meant to be. However, all-in-all it was a reasonably entertaining way to spend a couple of hours.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home