The Da Vinci Code
May 27, 2006
AV – ***
EV – ***
When I finished reading The Da Vinci code sometime in December 2004, I was so fascinated and intrigued by the whole idea behind the novel that I believed it could make an engaging movie. Agreed that its a controversial subject and the facts are thoroughly questionable, but one has to commend the meticulous research done by the author to bring forth a story that has cooked up more controversy than any other movie in recent times. Now comes the $224 million question (yes, that was the opening weekend collection!) which everyone’s asking – is the movie worth all the fuss?
Well, yes and no.
Read the book review at:
The movie is a true adaptation of the book. It does not leave any detail unattended. The pace is racy, characteristic to the book. The screenplay does not wander away from the plot to showcase any unnecessary detailing and is gripping. The performances are good, not extraordinary for the simple reason that the focus was mainly on the plot and not the characters.
Tom hanks was my obvious choice to play Robert Langdon (second choice was Johny Depp, for some strange reason ). Langdon’s character, which is soft-spoken, observant, sharp and suffering from claustrophobia, is potrayed well by Hanks. Though this time the immensely gifted actor does not have to display any histronics, he does a commendable job by enacting Langdon’s personality with ease. Audrey Tautou (beautiful!!!) as Sophie Nouveau does fine. Ian “Gandalf” McKellen steals the thunder with his Teabing act. Surprisingly Jean Reno, who other wise is quite wooden, chips in a decent performance.
The movie is not as intriguing as the novel. The novel had already its share of controversies but it was not met with such a big hue and cry (atleast in India), but since a movie has a wider audience, a better reach and especially this one being of epic proportions, had attract a lot of unwanted attention. If there was no ban on the sale of books, then there was no need to ban this movie (in some pockets in India) because it does not show anything other than what is depicted in the book.
What about the plot?
There is no use discussing the plot here as I believe that those who have read the book need not be told anything and those who have not read it are not going to benefit anything from what I write here because one has to read it to make sense of the proceedings on the screen. This is not Harry Potter – read the book, then watch it, else struggle (worse – sit blank).
All said and done, the movie version of The Da Vinci Code is an entertaining and fast paced thriller. That does not qualify for a great cinema, nevertheless its surely worth the price of your ticket. It does not justify the air of controversy around it; the idea, the research and the book surely does.
A da Vinci Code sequel?