Monday, May 29, 2006

The Da Vinci Code

The Da Vinci Code is finally here. After getting a green signal post a special screening from the I&B ministry, it was finally released last week in India with a disclaimer and an Adults only tag.

I saw the movie on Saturday nite, thanks to a friend who booked the tickets in advanced. The pre-release hype and the contraversy surrounding the movie ensured lots of eager audeience and a full house. Those who had read the book wanted to see if the director Ron Howard has done justice or not. Those who had not read the book were simply waiting to discover what the hype was all about. I started the book last week but was unable to finish it before I actually saw the movie. However, by then I had a fair idea of what the story was all about.

I liked the movie. I would give it 4 stars out of 5. Except for sometime in between, where it appears slow, the pace is good and keeps you captivated. I liked the cast, all of them did a good job. Not very impressed with Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon, as we are all used to seeing him in complex character roles. Hence this one really did not bring out the best in him. I especially like the characters of Sophie Neveu(Audrey Tautou) , Silas(Paul Bettany) and Leigh Tibing(Ian McKellen).

After reading the description of the Louvre museum in the book, I found the actual museum a bit too modern to my taste in the movie. However, the shots of the museum, Saint Sulpice church, Eiffel tower and the rest of Paris was a delight to watch. Also, the paintings and the hidden meanings were explained well.

I am still reading the book. Would want to see the movie again once I finish it. Maybe I would feel differently about the movie then :)).

Would like to know views on the movie from people who have read the book. Any comments ??


Sriraj said...


I have not read the book or seen the movie. However, my inputs:

1. What's with the mullet, Tom?!!

2. A lot of the so-called critics have said that Ron Howard does more justice to the Da Vinci code than San Drown himself.

3. I do not know much about Christianity and the apostles, etc. So it would be difficult for an ignoramus like yours truly to truly enjoy the nuances. even a little bit of info on the origins of this religion would've tickled my curiosity. However, I am content to not check out either the movie or the book.

Venkat said...

Dan Brown is over-rated.., make no mistake.

His Deception Point and Digital Fortress are insipid attempts at "technology fiction"...

i'll give him one thing.., he's damn good at converting a simple thought into a full fledged story.., it's a rare talent thats fetched him millions..

Venkat said...

I still want to see Da Vinci code, the newspapers say that the central theme is plagiarised, but the content is captivating all the same..

Rajni said...


Ron Howard has really done a great doubt....but I would not agree that he surpassed Dan Brown.

I think as a the director of a movie made on a controversial bestseller, he did an amazing job. However, movies based on books, do lack the details and hence the depth and understanding of the history and the plot. We have to remember that the movie is an adaptation of the story...hence the director has full liberty to twist the plot a bit here and there to bring out the story well.

However, for a person like me, who wud rather read than watch the movie based on the book, its difficult to convince myself that such distortions were actually needed. I end up feeling bad about the entire thing :((

BTW, you need not know the origin of Christianity to appreciate the plot :)

Anand said...

Here I go...

I'd give 2.5/5 (average) for the movie. I'd have casted someone but Tom Hanks for that role. Music score wasn't that great - IMO.

Coming to Ron Howard...He has made
wonderful movies in the past (Cinderella Man, A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13 are my picks). I wouldn't put Da Vinci Code on par with such movies...DVC is a good time pass...period.

Going into the novel - It is a conspiracy theory turned into a fiction. The conspiracy theory exists for ages and hence Dan cannot (and I believe doesn't) claim the rights to that. Now forgetting the story and taking the novel at its face value - I started hating it the moment I finished it. It is nothing more than a racy novel without any structure. Esp, the last 50 pages (in the unbound edition) are despicable - lacking in taste! He was not performing an art - rather he was trying to make a best seller, and succeded in that. I wouldn't read it again (I might see the movie again though).

I do not consider Dan as a good writer (forget "great" writer). I consider Ron as a good director. My views are the same about their products (the novel and the movie).

Sriraj is right - "trickling one's curiosity". Obviously, Dan succeeded in that. But, I request readers to differentiate between "curious" subject and "well written" novels.


Anonymous said...


Three quick names, in which I preferred the books over the movies, although the movies themselves were very good:

Gone With The Wind
Day of the Jackal
To Kill A Mockingbird

Check the movies/books of the above-three -- you'll enjoy them.



Rajni said...


Have read "Gone With The Wind" and "To Kill A Mockingbird"....loved both of them...especially the latter...its one of my all time favorites....Seen the movie of the first and felt it came as close to the book as possible. I felt Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh were amazing in portraying the two main characters of the book. A very well made movie !!

Will check out the "Day of the Jackal" when possible.

Anonymous said...

Check out "To Kill A Mockingbird", the movie i.e. too. Gregory Peck is awesome as Atticus. Robert Duvall, another legend, apparently made his screen debut as Boo Radley. Also, the opening sequences of the movie are terrific too. I forget who gave the music score -- either Elmer Bernstein or Maurice Jarre, I think. See the movie. You'll really enjoy it.


~A said...

To Kill a Mockingbird - is very good as a movie too.

Day of the Jackal - I felt the movie is very bad!

But, for me, it is always God Father trilogy, 2001 Space Odyssey, A Clockwork Orange and Silence of the Lambs when it comes to liking the movie version on par with the novel.

Arvind said...

I absolutely loved the movie. The character who plays 'Sophie Neveau' is stunningly pretty.
IMHO, the movie makers did a fabulous job of keeping the 'sometimes over detailed' content in the book to a 'minimum needed to understand sequences'.
Could'nt ask for more.
- Arvind