Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Movie review: The Da Vinci Code

When the Louvre curator is murdered inside the museum clues lead to hidden codes in Da Vinci paintings and a spiritual mystery protected by a secret society. They also point to Harvard professor Robert Langdon.

Tom Hanks (Dr. Robert Langdon), Audrey Tautou (Agent Sophie Neveu), Ian McKellen (Teabing), Jean Reno (Fache), Paul Bettany (Silas).

A murder in The Louvre has mysterious clues, one of which points to Dr. Langdon. Detective Fache summons Langdon to The Louvre and asks him to solve the mystery while secretly hoping he will implicate himself in the murder. Somehow Agent Neveu shows up to help Langdon and when the two of them realize there is a mystery to be solved, the chase is on. Little do they know the murder victim was a Priory of Sion member and Opus Dei has sent Silas to solve the same mystery, but with a blessing to kill as he wishes. As Langdon and Neveu struggle to stay alive and solve the mystery they realize that what they find could change the world; proof that Christ and Mary Magdalene were married and in fact had a child.

This is a wonderful mixture of several biblical stories, supposed secrets, theories, rumors, and myths. Although there are some holes in the plot, some things that don't seem quite historically accurate, the story is still wonderful. Much like an Indiana Jones episode with a theological focus in a more modern setting. The mysteries and clues keep you interested and the explanation of solutions for audience benefit adds understanding to the plot. Although not action in the traditional sense, the thought provoking nature of the story line keeps things exciting to the end.

Tom Hanks wouldn't have been my first choice as Langdon but, he did the job very nicely. Tautou also did well and played nicely with Hanks. McKellen, Reno and Bettany were all excellent in their respective roles. The chemistry between them all was very good and each generated audience investment in their character.

Camera work, sets, and backgrounds were nicely done with a deep historical feel and some beautiful artwork. True or not, the film felt as if it was filmed on location, adding greatly to production quality. Action scenes were mild but nicely done. Dialogue was good with only a few difficult accents. Sound and soundtrack were enjoyable.

Overall The Da Vinci Code is a nicely done film though it does fall somewhat short as a representation of the book. The story is intelligent and engaging, technical work is well done, and the cast is enjoyable. Fans of the book or Crime Thrillers should enjoy this one.

This one should be fine for preens and above with no nudity and little foul language. There is a self-mutilation theme that may be questionable for some.

Released: 2006
Reviewed: 11.14.08
Star rating: 5 out of 5
Genre: Thrillers, Crime Thrillers, Mysteries, Book adaptations, Sci-Fi Thriller

copyright ©2015 Dave Riedel

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