Enola Holmes 2

Enola Holmes 2

Film Netflix
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8

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Enola Holmes 2 sees the return of fledgling detective Enola and this time her case to find a missing girl crosses over Sherlock's investigation into money laundering. Can they work together?

“The game is afoot!” No…wait. “Now the game is afoot!”. Enola Holmes 2, starring Millie Bobby Brown and Henry Cavill, has no trace of the millennial eye-rolling at adhering to convention.

The catchphrase is gleefully proclaimed as youthful energy continues in this investigative Netflix sequel.

Whilst the 2020 Enola Holmes was an adaptation of the first book in The Enola Homes Mysteries series written by Nancy Springer, this 2022 sequel is an original story.


It takes inspiration from the famous 1888 matchgirls’ strike; revisiting the Holmes ‘universe’ through the different experiences of a female viewpoint and remains a commendable commitment, not least due to the ever-increasing star power of young leading lady, Brown.

As before, Brown’s effusive effervescence is what drives forward the movie’s energy. Without the benefit of an ever present confidant, Brown holds court with the camera – her thoughts, dilemmas, and discoveries are shared directly with us as ever accentuated by Brown’s compelling expressiveness.

It’s a tried and tested technique that is particularly effective here: we are wrapped up in the mystery as Enola’s contemporary, not her subservient.

As to the mystery itself, there are plenty of moving parts to keep us engaged.

Enola Holmes 2 Official Trailer

What Is Enola Homes 2 About?

Despite a poor start to her fledgling detective business, Enola is eventually employed by a poor young matchgirl to find her lost ‘sister’, Sarah Chapman.

Wrapped up within Chapman’s disappearance is a theft of secretive papers at the match factory, a deadly outbreak of typhus, obfuscated conspiratorial messages, and perhaps something to do with older brother Sherlock’s (Cavill) investigation into money laundering.

The weaving in and out of relevancy between Enola and Sherlock’s investigations lends to some outstanding scenes between the two of them. The two actors thrum with a swirl of emotions when navigating how to cope with the other, which also provides the emotional throughline.

Once the last flame has died out at the end (more on that later), it will be the afterglow of how the siblings leave things with one another that will dictate the lasting smile on your face.

Is Enola Holmes 2 Any Good?

Enola Holmes 2 continues the high energy delivery style that imbued its predecessor with such verve, although arguably director Harry Bradbeer (director of the first movie and several episodes of Fleabag, from which both movies are clearly influenced) overplays this particular card.

The film is stuffed with flashbacks, both for things that barely just happened and also for illustrative events in the first movie: such diversions add little beyond restless editing energy.

A well placed look to camera is highly effective – Brown excels at this just as much as Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s ‘Fleabag’ does – but it can also break an emotional flow. Enola’s instructive and giddy dance lesson with the gooey-eyed Lord Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge, last seen spitting blood as Sid Vicious in Pistol!) is full of adolescent breathlessness, yet a side-eye to camera sadly pops that insular bubble.

The energy also comes skidding to a halt during the round of endless endings. It’s fun to watch 10 plates being spun but less so to bring each to a slow stationary stop.

What could have been a calculated culmination of threat falls into hackneyed bwah-ha-ha-ing where the script undercuts an otherwise gleefully revelatory performance, whilst other actions and their subsequent drawn out conclusion threaten to render all the effort taken to get that far as moot.

Thus the obligatory scene depicting the matchgirl strike itself suffers from the movie already having burnt itself out.

A towering David Thewlis, jittery Adeel Akhtar (as Lestrade) and reappearance from the Helena Bonham-Carter (albeit briefly) as irrepressible mother Eudoria Holmes proves that even if big picture plots struggle to come together, there is plenty of scope to pack any future instalments with excellent casting. With a film packed with such talent the telling of the tale still shines bright under individual inspection.

Despite Enola Homes 2 lacking a satisfying culmination – which surely is what we want from a detective type format – Millie Bobby Brown keeps the charm going through the strength of her performance; that her closing moments with Cavill successfully resonate indicate that the game remains afoot. Netflix ordering further Enola Homes movies would be elementary, my dear reader.

Words by Mike Record

Good

  • Brown And Cavill Shine
  • Full Of Fun And Energy
  • Great All Round Casting

Bad

  • Excessive Bits To Camera At Times
  • Resolution Of The Case Lacks Satisfaction
  • Too Many Endings Syndrome
8

Great

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