Review: Enola Holmes

“Enola Holmes” brings a different perspective to the Sherlock Holmes franchise: a teenage female reinterpretation of a male-dominated story. Enola was never in the original books by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle or the BBC show “Sherlock.” Instead, her character is based on the young adult novels by Nancy Springer. Not having been around her brothers when she was young, Enola lives her own life, separate from her talented brothers. She learns how to fight and solve mysteries in her own way.

Enola Holmes (Millie Bobby Brown of “Stranger Things”), the younger sister of the detective Sherlock Holmes (Henry Cavill of “DCEU Superman”), wakes up on her 16th birthday to find her mother missing. 

A wild spirited girl, Enola uses the skills taught to her by her feminist mother (Helen Bonham Carter of “Harry Potter”) to deduce where her mother has gone. Meanwhile, her older brother Mycroft Holmes (Sam Claflin of “The Hunger Games”) wishes to send her to a girls finishing school to become a proper lady. 

Refusing that path, Enola runs away to continue to search for her mother. Along the way, she meets a boy, Lord Tewksbury (Louis Partridge), who is running away from his rich, suffocating family. Soon afterward, a man tries to kill him and then Enola, who now has two mysteries to solve all while she avoids her brothers.

The movie shows the story of how a girl becomes an independent woman in 1886 England, where women’s rights are scarce. An empowering feminist film with powerful themes of familial bonds and friendship, “Enola Holmes” can also be lighthearted and funny. Brown breaks the fourth wall many times as comic relief in more intense scenes. When she gets into a difficult situation she addresses the audience, telling them how she could have avoided the problems.

Brown’s dual role as Enola Holmes and as a co-producer at the age of 16 is impressive, though different from her former roles as Eleven in “Stranger Things” and Madison Russell in “Godzilla: King of the Monsters.” Millie Bobby Brown stars as the main character in “Enola Holmes” just like her other projects, but in this film, she displays her acting skills at their highest potential by giving a more verbal performance. “Enola Holmes” is currently available to watch on Netflix.