The Da Vinci Code is a movie that has been the object of critics’ scorn since Cannes. Therefore when I went in my expectations were quite low. I was pleasantly surprised. I enjoyed this intellectual treasure hunt. Action sequences boldly intertwine with quieter scenes where codes and symbols are being deciphered to lead to the next clue. At times we get the back story of what has happened to a persecuted religious sect through out the ages. The flashbacks to ancient Rome are brief but beautiful I felt myself wishing the movie was even longer and had the opportunity to explore these back stories even further. In addition there are some gorgeous locations for filming, among them the Louvre and Rosslyn.
Hanks and Tautou perform like the pros that they are–it is interesting that two actors known for their whimsical charms were cast in such serious roles. Generally actors starring in thrillers will be those known for their laconic delivery and quietly passionate intensity. However, Tom Hanks was playing a professor of symbology his delivery and cadence were highly believable and endearing.
The supporting cast reads like a list of international superstars: Alfred Molina, Ian McKellen, Jean Reno and Jurgen Prochnow–all were superb.
A highlight of the film’s overall appearl is how it gave the audience the opportunity to view the world from a perspective of someone who is used to looking at symbols and their meanings, in particular of things that most of us don’t even notice most of the time. It was an unusual and fascinating angle on perception.