When I was a kid I loved a good mystery. I watched Scooby Doo, I read The Hardy Boys and watched the TV show, I was obsessed at one point with Tutankhamen and the discovery of his tomb, and I eventually got right into all forms of Sherlock Holmes. There is nothing like a great classic mystery story, it just sweeps you away and challenges you to become the sleuth yourself. A new film out this week, The Limehouse Golem, is a strong throwback to the mysteries of yesterday and a must watch for fans of the genre.
In Victorian London England, a series of brutal murders has shaken the community of Limehouse. Detective John Kildare (Bill Nighy) has been assigned the case and on the same night as the last murder, Elizabeth Cree (Olivia Cooke) is accused of poisoning her husband John Cree Sam Reid), who is one of four suspects in the murders. Now Kildare must figure out the mystery before Elizabeth is hanged for the murder of her husband, possibly finding some leniency for her.
Only being a couple days away from a new big screen version of Murder on the Orient Express directed by Kenneth Branagh, I have high hopes that we are on the verge of a renaissance of murder mysteries. The Limehouse Golem is a nice start. It has a wonderful mysterious atmosphere about it through the whole film that really brings the Victorian London setting to life, and the entire cast is just perfect including Bill Nighy as Detective Kildare, whom I would love to see in even more mysteries if that was even possible. Or a TV series…there’s some food for thought. The Limehouse Golem has a classic whodunit story that is entertaining and did indeed keep me guessing, the pace was steady but never let me lose interest, and even the directing style of Juan Carlos Medina seemed to be a throwback with classic angles and character-centric photography. And when the film was over I had an uncontrollable urge to go back and watch every murder mystery film that came before it. If that isn’t a sign of a good movie I don’t know what it. Highly recommended.