James Milstead’s review published on Letterboxd:
HOLMES & WATSON (12)
D: Etan Cohen
Sony/Columbia/Mosaic Media (Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Jimmy Miller & Clayton Townsend)
USA 🇺🇸 2018
W: Etan Cohen [based on characters created by Arthur Conan Doyle]
DP: Oliver Wood
Ed: Dean Zimmerman
Mus: Mark Mothersbaugh
Will Ferrell (Sherlock Holmes), John C. Reilly (John Watson), Rebecca Hall (Dr. Grace Hart), Rob Brydon (Inspector Lestrade), Ralph Fiennes (Prof. Moriarty), Kelly MacDonald (Rose)
This lowbrow spoof stars comedy partners Will Ferrell & John C. Reilly as the title characters, so loosely based on Arthur Conan Doyle's literary characters it's actually a bit of insult that they're called Holmes & Watson.
The jokes are barrel-scrapingly bad, from the opening scene until you care to pay attention (I stopped after 30 minutes).
Considering the cast involved, there's no excuse for this being such a terrible, woefully unfunny comedy and it's all due to a flawed screenplay which should never have been greenlit, but then you have to consider Sony's movie production history and their nonchalant attitude to quality control. They don't give s shit, as long as it makes money... perhaps they might start caring now, since this deservedly landed in cinemas with a thud over the 2018 Christmas holidays.
For some bizarre reason, the release in the UK had a different opening to the film, introducing the duo over a suicide attempt and a giant marrow instead of meeting at school. It's a weird scene which feels like an outtake, as does most of what follows.