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Sherlock Gnomes


Stars: Voices: Emily Blunt, James McAvoy, Johnny Depp, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mary J Blige, Michael Caine, Ashley Jensen, Matt Lucas, Maggie Smith, Ozzy Osbourne, Stephen Merchant, Julie Walters, Richard Wilson, James Hong

Director: John Stevenson

While the world cannot exactly have been crying out for a sequel to 2011's Gnomeo and Juliet, it can't be denied that this belated follow-up is, at least at its occasional best, fast and furious fun.

The gnomes, including lovers Gnomeo and Juliet (McAvoy, Blunt, both up for it) have relocated from Stratford to London and a much bigger garden. But their new surroundings are soon under a shadow, with gnomes disappearing left, right and centre.

The solution is to call for Sherlock Gnomes (Depp), who doesn't look much like a gnome, and senses his old adversary Moriarty, may be at the bottom of it all.

Talking of bottoms, there are lots of (not very good) rude jokes for the kids, making the American PG certificate seem much more sensible than the British U.

Depp and Ejiofor (as his Watson) play it straight and give the film a lift it often needs, particularly when participating in a riotous and cleverly conceived waterbound ride. You can see the kids' theme park attraction being built now.

Who knows - the years to come could bring us a pirate adventure, Skull and Crossgnomes, a Spielberg rip-off, Indiana Gnomes and the Pond of Gold, a western, A Fistful of Gnomes or...but gnome more...for now.

David Quinlan

USA/UK 2018. UK Distributor: Paramount (MGM). Technicolor.
86 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: U.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 11 May 2018