Robert Downey Jr. is now so closely associated with the role of Tony Stark/Iron Man that some fans have difficulty telling where one ends and the other begins. Of course, he’s appeared in a wealth of other movies as well, and two of them, Gothika and Sherlock Holmes, are set to hit Netflix this week.
The former is a horror pic that sways between psychological and visceral, and is one of the films that began Downey Jr.’s Hollywood renaissance after years of substance abuse and associated legal trouble. It stars Halle Berry as Miranda Grey, a psychiatrist in a mental hospital who finds herself a patient there after being accused of killing her husband, an act of which she has no memory and may or may not have had supernatural influence.
RDJ, meanwhile, plays Pete Graham, a psychiatrist colleague who oversees her treatment and attempts to coax her into regaining her lost memories and understand why she committed the murder. Although a supporting character, his presence is felt throughout the film as much of how Miranda is treated by the hospital staff is as a result of his analysis of her, and as the movie approaches its climax and revelations come thick and fast, he has an increasingly significant role.
On the other hand, Sherlock Holmes is the most adapted figure in literary history, but unlike contemporary TV shows Sherlock and Elementary, this version maintains the original Victorian setting. In it, an aristocrat executed for committing a series of ritualistic murders apparently rises from the grave to extract his vengeance, and Holmes and Watson are brought in to untangle the mystery.
The movie features the titular detective as a man of action that many adaptations often discard, and has Watson more as Holmes’ partner rather than the bumbling sidekick he’s typically portrayed as. Although not a direct adaptation of any of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories, it nevertheless manages to feel like one, maintaining a rational and skeptical outlook even in the face of the apparent supernatural.
Tell us, though, will you be checking out either of these Robert Downey Jr. movies when they arrive on Netflix on January 1st? Let us know down below.