Movie News

Clint’s Review : The Da Vinci Code

Clint’s Review : The Da Vinci Code
Clint

“Everything [is] as condensed as dessert milk”


Tom Hanks, Audrey Tatou, Jean Reno, Ian McKellen, Alfred Molina, Jurgen Prochnow, Paul Bettany, Etienne Chicot

You know that feeling you get when you rip open a big bag of potato chips only to find the bag is quarter-full? If you’re starving, you’ll dig right in anyway, sautéing your lips with the salty goodness, but you’re bound to come to the realisation that hot air can be ever so dissatisfying, eventually, aren’t you? Especially when you reach the bottom of the synthetic packet.

The film version of Dan Brown’s best selling, not to mention hugely hyped, book, “The Da Vinci Code” is like that – you just know they could’ve fit more inside. At the same time, you’re aching for it, so you’ll still gladly dig into what’s on offer.

Yet, this isn’t so much Dan Brown’s “Da Vinci Code”, but “The Da Vinci Code for Dummies” with everything as condensed as dessert milk, and most of the mutton from the book’s bone ravaged before it got before the cameras.

Same deal as the book: Professor (and all-round expert code breaker) Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) and Sophie Neveu (Audrey Tatou), a cryptologist with the French Judicial Police, are thrust together on a frantic quest for the Holy Grail, when a series of murders are committed, and Langdon finds himself the prime suspect. What they discover is a major religious cover-up, one that seems to indicate that Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene were married and had a child – Among other ‘surprising’ revelations.

And for the sake of saving ‘some’ didn’t-see-that-coming-moments, I’ll leave it there.

Yep, Hollywood has had its way with, what some believe, is one of the best books of the century. But is it bad enough that’ll have everyone screaming ‘rape’?

No.

In fact, “The Da Vinci Code” isn’t a bad movie at all. It’d be even better if it weren’t called “The Da Vinci” code, because then the pressure and expectations would be sans from the analysis. On it’s own, it’s an entertaining, well performed and ultimately exquisitely shot film, the likes of which Ron Howard is famous for.

On the other hand, it is “The Da Vinci Code”, and you can’t help but notice that it should never have been turned into a two-and-a-half hour movie, but more so, a tri-nightly min-series, just long enough to squeeze all the important details in.

In it’s current form, it not only summarizes (not to mention skips over crucial parts) the book, but lays everything out in front of the audience as if we were brainless chimps in a Roddy McDowall movie. Everything feels rather forced (yes, we guessed that plot point an hour ago, why bother explaining it…again!) and studio trite (Oh look, here comes another ‘Tom Hanks’ moment).

If you’ve never read the book, you’ll walk out of the film wondering what all the fuss is about. The movie makes it seems like such a simple easy-to-join-the-dots tale, with the audience always five steps ahead of the film.

In fact, Disney’s “National Treasure”, which treads similar lines – Nicolas Cage discovers a hidden buried treasure, via cryptic clues – but put entertainment before plot point, might even be a more enjoyable film. It definitely moved faster, and it encompassed a few more surprises. But, of course, that was helped by the fact that nobody had any expectations about that one. “Da Vinci” always had its work cut out for it – but boy, if they could only have quickened up the pace a bit, or let us, the audience, do some of the thinking for ourselves.

Having said that, it is a good-enough film, and the one thing that most people were sceptical about – the casting of Tom Hanks in the lead – is actually one of its saving graces. In addition, Paul Bettany is excellent as Silas, the terminating albino, whilst Audrey Tatou is absolutely radiant as the inquisitive Sophie. Howard has also made great use of the locations he has been given access too – they add a lot to his depiction.

The Catholic Church has nothing to worry about here though. This is way too cheesy for anyone to swallow as gospel, and ain’t nobody going to be crowning Ronny Howard the new Messiah anytime soon.

Read the book instead.

Rating :
Reviewer : Clint Morris

Share this story!Share on FacebookShare on TumblrShare on StumbleUponTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someoneShare on Google+Pin on PinterestDigg thisBuffer this pagePrint this pageShare on LinkedIn
(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
Movie News
Clint

Clint is the creator, editor and maintainer of Moviehole. Loves David Lynch, David Fincher... actually, any filmmaker by the name of David.

More in Movie News

FARGO "The Heap" -- Episode 108 -- Airs Tuesday, June 3, 10:00 pm e/p) -- Pictured: (L-R) Keegan-Michael Key as Agent Budge, Jordan Peele as Agent Pepper -- CR: Chris Large/FX

Key and Peele will end after current season

AshJul 27, 2015
arrives at the 17th annual Hollywood Film Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 21, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California.

Michael B. Jordan to star in Just Mercy adaptation

AshJul 25, 2015
will-smith-jay-z

Will Smith, Jay Z developing real-life HBO miniseries

AshJul 25, 2015
veep

Veep stars developing college football comedy

AshJul 25, 2015
sandra

Our Brand Is Crisis gets awards-season release date

AshJul 25, 2015
Actor Garret Dillahunt arrives at the 2011 Film Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach on February 26, 2011 in Santa Monica, California.
2011 Film Independent Spirit Awards - Arrivals
Santa Monica Pier
Santa Monica, CA United States
February 26, 2011
Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

To license this image (63699099), contact WireImage.com

Garret Dillahunt joins Rounding Third

AshJul 25, 2015
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 30:  Naomi Campbell poses during a photo call for Australian TV show, "The Face of Australia"  at Carriage Works on November 30, 2013 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Naomi Campbell checks in to American Horror Story: Hotel

AshJul 25, 2015
mission-impossible-rogue-nation-hunt-hostage_1920.0

Mission : Impossible – Rogue Nation : The Reviews Are In!

ClintJul 25, 2015
judygreer

Ant-Man actress nabs tiny role in Masters of Sex

Editorial StaffJul 25, 2015