Monday, September 28, 2020

Movie Monday: Enola Holmes

I've been waiting for the new Netflix movie, Enola Holmes, based on a series of YA novels about Sherlock Holmes' sister, ever since I heard that Millie Bobby Brown, of Stranger Things fame, stars in it. So, we watched it this weekend, soon after its release, and enjoyed this light, fun story.

Enola Holmes, played by Brown, is the much younger sister of Sherlock (played by Henry Cavill) and Mycroft (played by Sam Clafin), but she barely knows her brothers, who left home when she was young. Now sixteen years old, she has grown up under the tutelage of her mother, Eudora, played by Helena Bonham Carter, a nontraditional woman for her time. Eudora has not only taught Enola history, science, math, and literature but has also taught her daughter archery, ciphers, self-independence, and even how to fight. The two women are very close, so Enola is devastated to wake up one morning to find that her mother is gone. Sherlock and Mycroft come back home to take over, and older brother Mycroft takes it upon himself to be Enola's guardian, while he puts Sherlock in charge of finding their mother. Mycroft believes that a young woman like Enola should be in finishing school to become a proper lady, but Enola has other ideas. She dresses up like a boy and makes her escape from the family estate to London, where she is sure her mother has gone. Along the way, she meets a boy about her age named Lord Tewkesbury, played by Louis Partridge, who is also running away from his family. The two join forces for a bit, and Enola--skilled in many ways but unfamiliar with the outside world--takes on London in order to track down her mother. Along the way, she encounters bombs, gunpowder, a murderer, and many other hazards.

This movie is just plain fun! The tone is light and playful, with plenty of humor. Of course, Brown is outstanding in her role as Enola, and the supporting cast is very good, too. Enola's adventures take her on a twisty and unpredictable path full of danger, with non-stop action on screen, though the film also takes the time to build her character and give her depth. She's a delightful, engaging girl, and we were rooting for her from beginning to end! This movie has it all: mystery, adventure, action, humor, and even a touch of romance. It's a great movie for all ages and will give young girls a worthy heroine.

Enola Holmes is a Netflix original movie, perhaps the first of a series?, so it is available exclusively on Netflix. I haven't yet read the books it is adapted from, but I have heard they are wonderful.

[NOTE: I did, however, read the first book in another young female Holmes series, A Study in Charlotte, featuring Charlotte Holmes, a modern teen girl descended from Sherlock who goes to boarding school in Connecticut and meets Jamie Watson, descendant of that Watson. I enjoyed it very much on audio, and you can read my full review (no spoilers) and listen to a sample of the audio at that link.]

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