You are herecontent / Up-arming the Movies

Up-arming the Movies

By Gar Smith


I've been dismayed by the recent slew of movie posters advertising the new Sherlock Holmes sequel. Popping up on billboards and buses around the Bay Area, they show a smirking Sherlock and a blank-faced Watson brandishing handguns.

Now call me old-fashioned, but I don't recall watching any of the original Holmes films in which Basil Rathbone walked around waving a pistol. Just when did Holmes decide to swap his meerschaum for a Mauser?

A. Conan Doyle's Holmes used to rely on introspection, intelligence and dazzling powers of observation to solve crimes. Does anyone else find it disturbing that Doyle's "battle of wits" has been replaced by a Hollywood gun-battle of twits? Instead of "Elementary, Dr. Watson," Holmes' modern catchphrase would seem to be: "Hand me a new clip, Watson!"

Instead of "Elementary, Dr. Watson," Holmes' modern catchphrase would seem to be: "Hand me a new clip, Watson!"

Now I'm gracious enough to forgive the filmmakers for the wardrobe decision to drop the deerstalker cap -- but Holmes (as portrayed by Robert Downey Jr.) in drag? That's really lip-sticking it to us purists.

In response to the encroaching pistolry and pyrotechnics in what passes for "modern cinema," my first thought was to call for a national campaign to ban weapons from our movie screens.

If Hollywood directors can change their ways and show A-list actors to eschew on-screen smoking and start buckling their seatbelts before a car-chase, why not exercise a little restraint when it comes to the overbearing bearing of arms -- at least for the week of the High Holy Holidays?

But since a Holiday Hollywood Handgun Ban looks unlikely, I've decided to take a different approach.  Now that Doyle's dudes have been dolled up in Edwardian body armor, maybe it's time for the rest of us to join the trend and up-arm some other movie classics.

Here are a few titles that occurred to me.

Peter Pan

Perhaps you can come up with others:

Peter Pandemonium

Mary Popguns

Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang-Bang

Gun-Slinging in the Rain

To Blast a Mockingbird

Machinegun Muppets Take Manhattan

Hercule Poirot Goes Ballistic

Dora the Explorer: Locked and Loaded

E.T.: The Exterminating Terrestrial

A Gunfight at the Opera (starring the Marksmen Brothers)

Emeryville's Pixar Studios would be expected to join the fray with a holiday feature where Woody, Buzz and the gang return as a team of grenade-tossing mercenaries in Destroy Story.

And, of course, Pixar's next Cars sequel would be called Tanks!


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

If you can't use an unbelivably rich universe like Doyle's Sherlock Holmes without loading it with guns, don't.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Speaking Events


War Is A Lie: Second Edition
Book Tour

May 19, Sarasota, FL, 7:00 p.m. Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center 525 Kumquat Court, Sarasota, FL

May 20, Jacksonville, FL, 7:00 p.m., Florida Christian Center Auditorium, 1115 Edgewood Ave S, Jacksonville, FL 32205, (904) 381-4800.

May 21, Gainesville, FL
7:00 p.m.
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Gainesville, Florida
4225 NW 34th St, Gainesville, FL 32605
(352) 377-1669
Sign up on FB.

May 28, San Francisco, CA
11 a.m. to 1 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Daniel Ellsberg, at San Francisco Main Public Library, 100 Larkin Street.
Sign up on FB.

May 28, Marin County, CA
4 to 6 p.m., David Swanson in conversation with Norman Solomon, at Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 29, Oakland, CA
3 to 4 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Cindy Sheehan, at Diesel: A Bookstore, 5433 College Avenue at Kales (near Manila), Oakland, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 29, Berkeley, CA
7:30 to 9 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, sponsored by the Social Justice Committee and Cynthia Papermaster, 1606 Bonita Ave. (at Cedar), Berkeley, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 30, Fresno, CA
2 to 4 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at a Peace Fresno event
Community United Church of Christ
5550 N. Fresno Street
Fresno, CA 93710

June 11 St. Paul, MN, 6 p.m. at Macalester Plymouth Church Social Hall 1658 Lincoln, St. Paul, MN.
Sign up on FB.

June 12 Minneapolis, MN, 9 and 11 a.m. at St. Joan's 4533 3rd Ave So, Minneapolis, MN, plus peace pole dedication at 2 p.m.
Sign up on FB.

Other Events Here.


Support This Site


Get free books and gear when you become a supporter.



Speaking Truth to Empire


Families United


Ray McGovern


Financial supporters of this site can choose to be listed here.

Buy Books

Get Gear

The log-in box below is only for bloggers. Nobody else will be able to log in because we have not figured out how to stop voluminous spam ruining the site. If you would like us to have the resources to figure that out please donate. If you would like to receive occasional emails please sign up. If you would like to be a blogger here please send your resume.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.