“Enola Holmes 2”: Sherlock’s Sister Explores Feminism in the Nineteenth Century

Everyone knows of Sherlock Holmes’ escapades and his adversaries. However, little is known about his family. Could there have been a smarter, wittier Sherlock that was undiscovered?

In the “Enola Holmes” series, the life of Sherlock’s younger sister is systematically explored. Her feminist upbringing in the late nineteenth century and her extraordinary self-conviction create a unique coming-of-age story that is intertwined with the heart-pounding moments of a thriller. The second movie in the series, “Enola Holmes 2,” focuses on Enola’s journey through London and her efforts to aid the underserved while working jointly with her brother Sherlock. Released on October 27, the long awaited sequel to “Enola Holmes” provided an exciting extension of the storyline, and for unique character and plot development. Caution: spoilers ahead.

Enola (Millie Bobby Brown) speaks to the camera in first person, and is almost aware that she has an audience throughout the film: she is constantly having conversations with the viewer, explaining her perspective or perception of people and places, and most importantly, demonstrating just how independent and self-convicted she is—sometimes to her own detriment. The use of unique camera angles brings levity and fun into the film by using Enola’s judgments to create moments of laughter for the audience and other characters in the film.

Throughout the series, in both movies, Enola’s friendship, and possible romantic relationship, with Lord Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge), is heavily explored. In the first movie, the romantic relationship extends no further than holding hands; however, in the second movie, they both confess their mutual feelings for one another. What I think is done well in this movie is how Enola develops her relationship with Lord Tewkesbury on her own terms. She retains her personality and her objectives despite the fact that she is supposed to have a romantic partner. By shirking tradition in terms of her romantic interest, Enola develops her own story: solving her case. This is particularly effective and empowering because it provides a new avenue for Enola to explore herself outside of the context of a relationship. She never forfeits her dreams and aspirations for Lord Tewkesbury, straying from the norm that women in movies are worth nothing more than their love interest.

The feminist energy in this film is palpable, and the producers made a clear effort to make all of the female characters front and center in this film. The film focuses on how Enola and her accomplices undermine the patriarchy and the essence of capitalism in eighteenth century London. The film provides a new look into how women contributed to different labor movements, and recharacterizes their role in society from homemakers to changemakers.

Overall, this film receives 5/5 for its excellent portrayal of late nineteenth century feminism, and for intrigue and mystery.