The famous detective (Robert Downey Jr.) and his trusty Watson (Jude Law) investigate a devil-worshipping murderer (Mark Strong), who appears to have returned from the dead. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s immortal creation takes a beating at the boorish hands of director Guy Ritchie and four writers (Michael Robert Johnson, Anthony Peckham, Simon Kinberg and Lionel Wigram), whose semi-literate efforts reduce the “story” to drivelling gibberish. Downey looks scruffy and hung-over, like a typical Ritchie protagonist (or one of his own mug shots), and he mumbles his lines as if (understandably) embarrassed by them. Still, he’s not terrible, though things might have gone better if he and Law had switched roles—and had a real script and a better director. Rachel McAdams plays Irene Adler with saucy pertness.