Run time: 86 mins
The arduous, seven-year long wait for the sequel to Gnomeo & Juliet – the cutsey animated film that was basically an Elton John musical in disguise – is finally upon us.
Ignoring Shakespeare’s tragic ending, the star-crossed garden gnomes from the first film (voices of James McAvoy and Emily Blunt) are alive and well and find themselves in London when their owners rather fancifully move from Stratford-upon-Avon (how on earth can they afford it?). There they team up with top ornamental detective Sherlock Gnomes (Johnny Depp, whose name was left out of the marketing for obvious reasons??) to investigate the kidnapping of gnomes across the city.
Thinking that it’s his adversary Moriarty (now imagined as a puffy yellow pie mascot with a sharp-toothed grin and lame meta villain jokes) the overly proud Holmes and his dutiful Watson, (Chiwetel Ejiofor) venture around the capital with Gnomeo and Juliet, but with only 24 hours to find the gnomes before they are smashed. Elton John fans will get a kick out of the soundtrack; for the rest of us, it’s more of the same garden variety. (Jack Whiting)