ENOLA HOLMES*CUT TO THE CHASE*
NOTE: This spoiler was submitted by Jeremy
The film starts with Enola Holmes (Millie Bobby Brown) introducing herself to the viewers. She states that her name is “alone” spelled backwards, but she was never alone as she spent most of her time with her mother Eudoria (Helena Bonham Carter) in their home of Ferndell Hall. After her father died and her two older brothers left home, Enola grew up learning from Eudoria on how to read, study science, and practice fencing or archery, among other things. She also recalls walking in on Eudoria in a secret meeting that she tried to keep from Enola. On the morning of her 16th birthday, Enola awoke to discover that Eudoria was missing, having left overnight. All she left behind for Enola were several gifts, including a book called “The Language of Flowers”.
Enola goes to the train station to reunite with her older brothers – the legendary detective Sherlock Holmes (Henry Cavill) and eldest Mycroft (Sam Claflin) – to figure out what happened to their mother. The brothers are surprised to see their little sister for the first time in ages. When they return to Ferndell Hall, Mycroft is stunned to find that Enola has not received a more traditional upbringing for young women, especially learning that Enola was homeschooled by their mother instead of getting a formal education. Sherlock surveys the place to find clues over Eudoria’s disappearance, believing that she left on her own accord as opposed to being kidnapped.
Mycroft thinks Enola needs to be sent to a finishing school, so he contacts Miss Harrison (Fiona Shaw) to get Enola. Miss Harrison is strict and unkind, also believing she has to mold Enola into the image of a “proper” young woman. Enola argues with Mycroft over the decision, but even Sherlock cannot do anything to prevent it. Enola retreats to the woods outside to sketch, where Sherlock goes to speak with her. He brings up a little pinecone that she kept as a pet and dragged around everywhere called Dash, named after the Queen’s pet, but Enola barely remembers. She asks him why he was absent from home for so long or never wrote back, even saying that she kept clippings of all his cases. Sherlock says he leads a busy life, but he encourages Enola to look into this mystery herself.
That night, Enola looks into the clues Eudoria left her in her gifts. She finds a piece of paper that begins with “alone”, meaning it’s a message specifically for her. It reads, backwards, “Enola, look in my chrysanthemums”. Enola goes to find Eudoria’s flower paintings and finds an envelope with money and a message that says “Our future is up to us”. She remembers Eudoria telling her that she can take two paths – the one she makes for herself, or the ones others choose for her. Enola decides to take the case on herself and sneaks out of Ferndell Hall dressed as a boy. She leaves a ragdoll in her bed, which Mycroft finds the next morning when getting ready to send her to Miss Harrison’s.
Enola goes to the train station and sees a woman (Hattie Morahan) looking for her son. When she gets to her train car, Enola sees a young man emerging from a luggage bag overhead. He introduces himself as Viscount Tewkesbury, Marquess of Basilwether (Louis Partridge). He asks her to help hide him, but she knows someone is looking for him (a man in a brown bowler hat) and orders him to leave. It turns out that was his own mother, plus his uncle and grandmother looking for him at the station. Tewkesbury ultimately leaves, but soon after, the man looking for him, an assassin named Linthorn (Burn Gorman), spots him and pursues him. Although Enola tries to make her way out, she turns back around after realizing Tewkesbury is in real danger. Linthorn attacks Tewkesbury and tries to throw him off the train, but Enola hits him with a crowbar and rescues the Marquess. The two then jump off the train to escape Linthorn.
Enola and Tewkesbury wander for a while until they are out of sight and can stop to rest for the night. They discuss their dead fathers and why they ran away from home. Tewkesbury was set to take his seat in the House of Lords and would vote to move the country forward, but he got nervous and chose to run away after a near-death experience. Enola decides that once they get to London, they will go their separate ways.
Once in London, Enola bids Tewkesbury farewell and hides out in a lodging house while pretending to be a proper Victorian lady. Meanwhile, Sherlock and Mycroft make plans to locate Enola, although Sherlock reads about a disturbance on the train and figures his sister was involved. Enola continues her search for her mother by trying to leave ciphers in the newspapers she frequently reads so that she may also find her.
Enola later comes across a jiujitsu class taught by a woman named Edith (Susie Wokoma), who knew Eudoria and recognizes Enola. She tells Edith what her plans are, but she tells Enola that Eudoria has always been hiding. Enola recalls the meeting she walked in on, as Edith was there, and Eudoria and other women were discussing someone named Ellie Houseman. However, Edith will not give her any useful information. Enola then finds a scroll that leads to more clues, which she uses while remembering other words discussed during the meeting. It turns out “Ellie Houseman” was just code for Limehouse Lane.
Enola goes to Limehouse Lane in hopes of further locating her mother. She comes across a warehouse and uncovers what appear to be explosives and other plans, indicating Eudoria is plotting some kind of revolutionary act. As Enola leads, she is found by Linthorn, who attempts to drown her while trying to find Tewkesbury, but Enola fights back and escapes his clutches after setting off some explosives. She then resolves to hold off on finding Eudoria and instead turns her attention to finding and protecting Tewkesbury, as she cannot help but feel some responsibility for his care.
Enola disguises herself as a widow to avoid drawing attention to herself and arrives at Tewkesbury’s estate to help his family find him. Although they try to send her away, she convinces them when saying she is working for Sherlock. It turns out that Inspector Lestrade (Adeel Akhtar) is already on the case and doesn’t believe Enola works with Sherlock as closely as he does. Lady Tewkesbury ends up sending both of them away. Enola then swaps clothes with a gardener. It ALSO turns out that Mycroft had hired Lestrade to search for Enola, but going by Mycroft’s description of “scrappy young woman with no poise”, Lestrade was fooled by Enola’s disguise.
Sherlock pays Edith a visit in his search for his mother and sister, and while he tries to convince her on the grounds that Mycroft would come after her assets, Edith calls Sherlock out on his obsession with his job and lack of attention given to his family, especially Enola.
Enola comes across Tewkesbury’s treehouse near the area where a large branch had almost killed him. She goes through his belongings and sees that Tewkesbury was planning his escape for a while, as well as some flowers that Enola recognizes and takes as a sign. She is found by his grandmother, The Dowager (Frances de la Tour), who recognizes the gardener’s clothes on her, but Enola still convinces her she is the widow. As they walk, The Dowager tells her how she feels that England should stay as it is per the upcoming vote among the lords.
Enola goes to a flower market and finds Tewkesbury. She takes him to hide after telling him he is still in danger, and it is learned that his father was murdered, while the branch that almost crushed him was cut deliberately. They are then found by Lestrade and run away after Enola brains him with a tea kettle. Unfortunately, Enola knows that they can’t both get away, so she lets Tewkesbury go and is caught by Lestrade. Mycroft escorts her to Miss Harrison’s school.
Enola undergoes the routines that Miss Harrison forces all the other girls to go through, from the way they walk, to the way they eat, as well as wearing unbearable corsets. She is later visited by Sherlock, who commends her on her detective work, although he admits he is also there because he cares for her. He also brought Dash, which he found under their mother’s bed. It gives Enola the push to not give up on her mission. As she looks over some newspaper clippings, she observes the event surrounding the lords’ votes. She then receives a supposed package from Mycroft, but it is really Tewkesbury sneaking in, having remembered that Enola told him she was being sent there. They sneak out and steal Miss Harrison’s car.
The two head to Basilwether, as Enola has determined that Tewkesbury’s uncle, Sir Whimbrel (David Bamber), must be the culprit, for he must have killed his brother and is trying to kill his nephew to succeed them and vote against their favors. They sneak into Tewkesbury’s home at night to find it apparently empty, but Linthorn appears and attacks them. He almost strangles Tewkesbury to death, but Enola gathers her strength and pulls off a previously hard move, the Corkscrew, to subdue Linthorn and bring him down, causing him to smash his head against a statuette. The Dowager then emerges with a rifle, revealing herself as the mastermind behind the assassination plot. She ordered her own son’s murder and fires at Tewkesbury so that they would not vote for the Reform Bill. Tewkesbury survives, having been wearing a chest plate, and The Dowager is exposed for her villainy.
Sherlock later goes to Lestrade to report on The Dowager’s guilt in the crime. Lestrade asks how he came to that conclusion, and after Sherlock gives his analysis, Lestrade comments that Enola solved it first. Sherlock leaves chuckling to himself.
Tewkesbury accepts his new position in the House of Lords and gets ready to cast his vote. Enola sees him one last time to say goodbye. As she goes home, she finds the day’s paper and comes across a hidden message that was apparently from Eudoria, telling her to meet at the Royal Academy, which Enola finds suspicious given that place’s exclusion of women, so she believes Sherlock is behind this. Sure enough, he and Mycroft are there waiting for her, and she never shows. Sherlock says he would like to take her as his ward. It is also noted that Tewkesbury’s vote helped lean in favor of the Reform Bill. Before the two leave, Sherlock finds that Enola left Dash on a nearby statue for him. He walks past her as she is in disguise, and he seemingly knows it’s her, leaving Dash there with her.
Enola goes to her lodging house and finds Eudoria there in her room. Although she is only going to be there briefly, she tells Enola she is sorry for leaving abruptly, but she explains that she had to leave to keep Enola safe so that she would not have to get involved in her personal activities. Eudoria also tells her daughter how proud she is of how she turned out. They embrace before parting ways again.
Enola speaks to the audience one last time, saying that, just like her mother and brothers, she is going to chart her own path as a detective and finder of lost souls. She then goes for a bike ride around London.