Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Da Vinci Code Movie Review

After my ramblings about the flashlight in the trailer, eventually Bulbgirl and myself got round to seeing the Da Vinci Code movie. This doesn't seem to have had any good reviews, but undeterred we set off to the cinema (the UGC in Renfield street). There's been all sorts of hu-ha about this movie, even before it came out. A nun was protesting on church steps, and in India there has even been disclaimers put up before the movie saying that it is a work of fiction.

What I saw before it started confirmed this:
"Responsibility for allowing under-12s to view lies with the accompanying or supervising adult." :D

How can you not like Amélie smacking the head of Gangster #1 off the floor? Sorry for that little spoiler but I'm sure it won't ruin your enjoyment of the movie. It might make you want to go and see it all the more.

Anyhow, it opened with some lovely shots of Paris (is it possible to make Paris not look lovely?). Tom Hanks is signing copies of his book right beside a lamp that is prominent in series one of 24, but I digress. There are scenes of self flagellation more violent than in the Name Of The Rose, Bulbgirl winced at these moments but they were brief.

Seeing the Louvre after dark is great, I for one would like to stroll around there without all the tourists. Louis in Interview with the Vampireby Anne Rice speaks of doing this. Unfortunately we only see a glimpse of 'The Oath of the Horatii' and a couple of the Da Vinci paintings before the movie rolls on.

Jean Reno is a policeman who is investigating the murder in the Louvre of a Harvard symbologist. Reno is miles better here that in the God awful remake of the Pink Panther.

Is it a bad movie? Certainly not, but many criticise the performances of the two main leads, Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou. True, they don't really sparkle on screen, but I think that is mainly to do with having so much to pack in to the movie. It seems like event after event after event, that is until the arrival of Ian McKellen who does sparkle, at least more than the others, enlivening the movie for me until his character seems to turn pantomime like later on.

Paul Bettany, delivers a good turn as Silas the psycho monk, so does Alfred Molina as Bishop Aringarosa, which kept making me think of "ring-a ring-a-roses", strange name.

The sweeping score by Hanz Zimmer reminded me towards the end of the film, of the work of Trevor Horn on Last of the Mohicans, no bad thing.

What I did like: Tom Hanks saying that he "got a wagon" as a gift, reminded me of his funnier turn as part of Woody's Round Up in Toy Story

What I didn't like: Tautou's miraculous ability to cure claustrophobia with a rub to the temples, and A-team like shooting with no one getting shot. Surely someone smart enough to prevent a security van door shutting while a bad guy has a gun pointed at their face, is also smart enough to pick up said gun from said bad guy when it falls on the ground?;
dodgy effects of ghostly figures walking beside the living on their way to the Cathedral.

That and someone eating crisps half a row away, CRISPS SHOULD BE BANNED FROM CINEMAS ALONG WITH ANY WOMBLE WHO BRINGS THEM IN. Other than that the audience stayed pretty quite the whole way through, thoroughly engaged mostly.

Definitely worth a watch.


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