The Da Vinci Code

The Da Vinci Code

(2006)

Art, semiotics and religious sects – the stuff movies are made of. Not really, but it's good for publicity. Love him or hate him, that big hearted, some may say sappy, Ronny H is bringing Dan Brown’s blockbuster to the big screen, re-teaming with screenwriter Akiva Goldsman - who've collectively brought you 'Cinderella Man' and 'A Beautiful Mind'.

A murder takes place in the Louvre under cryptic circumstances bringing together Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon (Hanks) and French cryptologist Sophie Neveu (Tautou). The clue deciphering duo, attempt to unlock the secrets of two thousand years hidden within the artwork of Leonardo da Vinci that may or may not lead to the Holy Grail.

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Flicks Review

Dan Brown went on a cheap bus-tour of Europe and scribbled down some notes as he passed through some famous churches. "Hmm, there's a stained glass window of a knight OPPOSITE a fleur-de-lis! THAT'S A CONSPIRACY!!" He then wet his pants and wrote a best-selling novel.

From this reviewer's point of view, the book was average and the film was no better. Brown's best selling novel was poorly written, the characters were dull stereotypes, and the twists were manipulative and cheap. The one favourable aspect, however, was the constant barrage of cliffhangers - one would think that these would produce an exciting film, but alas, that vain hope was not to be.

The Da Vinci Code is essentially a film comprised of rather stodgy conversations, poorly strung together in a never-ending barrage of faux-gravitas. "I don't understand", says Audrey Tatou's cute-but-dumb cryptologist as someone else then proceeds to explain the situation to her in the gravest tones possible. At least Ian McKellen and Paul Bettany are good - the ridiculous tea-drinking English stereotype of Sir Walter Teabing comes to life in McKellen's confident hands. Tom Hanks is less interesting purely because the silly plot leaves no time to develop his rather flat character.

The ending is laughable, as the filmmakers decide to side with Christians for a while and explain that even though they've spent two and a half hours arguing that Jesus is not the son of God, it's still okay to pray to him if you want.

The Da Vinci Code is not worth seeing at the cinema. Wait a couple of years and you'll see it on TV. Then you'll be able to change the channel if you want.


The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 20 ratings, 20 reviews
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Loved it but haven't read the book... YET


I gotta say this was one of those stories that just looses it when put into film.


Undecided....
Not a great movie. Not a bad movie.
It's more of a fairytale than anything...


Not boring. Not too long. Not miscast. Pity about all the flack it's received. Some folks seemed to be compelled to run this movie down and others jumped on the bandwagon all too readily. Judge this one for yourself. Hubbie (who hadn't read it first) and me (who had) both thoroughly enjoyed it.


Tom Hanks is just wrong. Reading the book gave me visions of Liam Neeson not some wimp like Hanks.
Even his voice ruined the movie for me as I could not close my eyes and imagine Liam.

All I have to say is TOM HANKS WAS JUST WRONG!


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The Press Reviews

25% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • One of the most talk driven summer flicks in living memory, an out of sorts Howard transforms what should be a fun treasure trail romp into something inert and borderline dreary... Full Review

  • Da Vinci never rises to the level of a guilty pleasure. Too much guilt. Not enough pleasure... Full Review

  • Ron Howard's splendid The Da Vinci Code is the Holy Grail of summer blockbusters: a crackling, fast-moving thriller that's every bit as brainy and irresistible as Dan Brown's bestseller... Full Review

  • For a film about a search for the Holy Grail it's remarkable only for how tediously bloodless it all is. Oh well, there's always the Monty Python version... Full Review

  • It's a dour, slightly murky vision: it feels, in a disconcerting way, as if director Ron Howard was trying to convey a mood of mild depression... Full Review