MR HOLMES (M)
NOT SO ELEMENTARY, UK, 100 MIN
The Guinness Book of World Records lists Sherlock Holmes as the “most portrayed movie character” of all-time. The highest recommendation that can be made of the new British production Mr Holmes is that the great actor Ian McKellen delivers one of the finest portrayals of old Sherlock ever attempted. In fact, you can take that “old Sherlock” and raise it to a “very old Sherlock”. For in this stately adaptation of author Mitch Cullin’s 2005 novel A Slight Trick of the Mind, McKellen’s Sherlock Holmes is 93 years old. Always self-analytical to a fault, Holmes can sense his renowned intellect could be on the wane. As if to revive his fading powers of deduction, Sherlock re-examines the case which forced his retirement three decades prior. While the directorial style of veteran Bill Condon ( Gods & Monsters) does sometimes stray towards the vanilla, the many flavours injected into the film by McKellen’s fearless, focused performance more than compensates. Co-stars Laura Linney.