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< Short and not so sweet on "da Vinci" | Main | Underrated movies >

See...people will go to the movies...

Posted at 2:10 PM on May 22, 2006 by Stephanie Curtis (1 Comments)

It's already too late for me to explain why people shouldn't see The Da Vinci Code. Apparently, every person who read the book went to see the movie the movie this weekend. That's a lot of people.

I am actually kind of relieved. It's a movie made for grownups. I hate to think what would have happened if it hadn't done well...maybe Hollywood would have written off the thriller for adults as viable summer fare. So even if I didn't think the movie captured the fun and thrills of the novel, I'm happy to see it do so well.

Here's my beef with the movie: it doesn't have the breakneck pace of the novel. Long, expository passages in books move more quickly than having to listen to someone say them onscreen. The movie seemed bogged down.

Moreover, a lot of the novel rests on the abilities and thoughts of Sophie. In the movie, she seems to just be along for the ride. At first, I thought screenwriter Akiva Goldsman gave all of Sophie's accomplishments in the book to Hanks' character Robert Langdon. So I looked at the book again. Goldsman didn't do that, but every time Sophie did something in the book like solve the anagram "so dark the con of man," Goldsman didn't linger on her problem solving. In the movie, she just threw out the answer and they moved on. When Robert discovers something however, Goldsman draws it out. You see Hanks get the gleam in his eye, his compatriots look at him expectantly and then he slwoly reveals his ingenious idea.

Plus, a lot of what you learn about Sophie in the book are her internal thoughts and her gradual understanding of her grandfather. Goldsman doesn't have time to bring out all her thoughts and paint to complete picture of Sophie, he's got to concentrate on his star, Hanks. So Sophie comes off as a young follower, not the stubborn and smart woman of the novel. In a way, Goldsman does to Sophie what the Catholic church presumably (as in the novel, folks, I am not particularly anti-Vatican about this) does to's too complicated to have both Jesus and Mary Magdalen as important figures in the church and it's too complicated to have Sophie and Robert be equals in the movie.

Comments (1)

Interesting take. I loved the movie, and think it would have been hard to have put more into it time wise.

Posted by Andrew | June 10, 2006 8:35 PM