holmes and watson reviews

When a studio avoids screening a movie for critics, it’s usually a bad sign. Holmes and Watson, a comedy that reunites the Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, hit theaters on Christmas Day, and not a single early review surfaced before that. Some committed critics ventured out to catch the flick on the holiday, though, and they clearly were not pleased with what they saw. As a result, the movie is now sitting at an alarming 0% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Holmes and Watson

Holmes and Watson should’ve been an easy home run. The comedy, which pokes fun at the legacy of legendary literary sleuth Sherlock Holmes, teams Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly for the third time. The duo previously appeared in the hilarious Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and Step Brothers. The prospect of these two very funny actors coming together again should inspire excitement and enthusiasm, but Holmes and Watson had very little buzz. Trailers didn’t encourage much confidence, and when it became clear that the film wasn’t going to be screened for critics in time for its December 25 opening, all signs pointed towards Holmes and Watson being a Christmas movie turkey.

Sure enough, now that several critics have had a chance to catch the picture on their own time, the response is overwhelmingly negative. Holmes and Watson has 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is no small feat. Even the terrible Welcome to Marwen currently has a higher rating. And just what a critics saying about Holmes and Watson?

EW‘s Dana Schwartz writes, “If you choose to watch this movie, you’ll be treated to an hour and a half of different versions of the same gag: what if [insert modern thing] somehow existed in Victorian times!?” and adds: “A brilliant supporting cast, which includes Hugh Laurie, Steve Coogan, Ralph Fiennes, Lauren Lapkus, Rebecca Hall, and Kelly MacDonald, is utterly wasted on this lame and forgettable outing. The only real mystery is why they wanted to be apart of this project at all.”

David Ehrlich at IndieWire says, “Mild gross-out humor (projectile vomit, cadavers baked into party cakes, etc.) is mashed together with poorly choreographed physical comedy (Holmes and Watson accidentally unleash a swarm of killer bees while trying to kill a single mosquito) and limp post-modern gags that poke fun at old technology (Watson telegrams someone a dick pic) or current events (a “Make England Great Again” hat precedes a conversation about how the Electoral College will always protect America from tyrannical grifters).”

AV Club‘s Ignatiy Vishnevetsky declares that Ferrel and Rielly hit “career lows” with the movie, stating, “One might call it a failure on almost every level—that is, if the movie ever gave the impression that it was trying to succeed. Instead, it’s pervaded by an air of extreme laziness.”

Over at The New York Times, Ben Kenigsberg states, “More laughs are all that would have been necessary to prevent the stagnation of “Holmes & Watson”; as the movie stands, smuggling in booze to dispel the sense of dull routine could only help. Sony sneaked this parody into theaters on Christmas without screenings for critics, normally evidence that the film in question is less than the work of a mastermind.”

There are plenty more reviews over at Rotten Tomatoes, but the gist is clear: Holmes and Watson stinks. As always, you should feel free to decide for yourself if the film is good – don’t just take critics’ words for it. But by all indications, you’re in for a lousy time at the movies.

Cool Posts From Around the Web: