The Analytical Mind: Comparing Sherlock Holmes, Then and Now

Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey jr., left) and Doctor Watson (Jude Law, right) on the hunt for criminals.

Arthur Conan Doyle’s great detective, Sherlock Holmes, is one of English literature’s most recognizable and enduring characters. As such, he has made more than 200 movies appearances since the inception of cinema. The master snoop had been portrayed by such luminaries as Basil Rathbone, Jeremy Brett, Christopher Plummer, Patrick Macnee, Jonathan Pryce, Christopher Lee and Charlton Heston. When Madonna’s former husband, British director Guy Ritchie, announced his plans to create a new version of Sherlock Holmes for the big screen, his choice for the part seemed rather curious to a lot of people. The filmmaker went with American actor Robert Downey jr. in the eponym’s role. The oft-troubled performer from ‘the other side of the pond,’ although talented, was a much-criticized selection due to the fact that he was battling drug addiction and legal problems for the better part of the 1990s and, more importantly, because he is no Englishman. Would he be capable of a convincing performance worthy of the legendary mantle?

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