So, just some numbers then.
Let me say immediately that I have not read The Da Vinci Code, and have no plans to do so. I didn’t exactly plan to see the film either, but I was invited and it got me out of the flat on a breezy, drizzly Saturday afternoon.
Meh. I was going to title this post “The Da Vinci Blowed”, but everyone’s doing that.
In an interview the other day Ian McKellen said it was a “talkie”. He meant not that it used the wondrous new synchronised sound and vision system taking the motion picture world by storm, but that it consisted of lots of scenes with people jabbering away at each other. And so it does. And does and does and continues to do for most of the film.
Endless expository chat. Flashbacks galore, some to the characters’ youths, some to various historical events, and some to what happened earlier in the film. Very well shot, nicely meshed into the scenes flashed back from, but dear lord you quickly become desperate for Bruce Willis to abseil through a stained glass window and uzi everyone into a mangled, bloody pulp.
That’s not to say it’s all bad. Ian McKellen does his best, as does Paul Bettany as the albino self-basting monk. It’s actually quite an interesting story. Fiction, slightly swivel-eyed, but interesting nonetheless. I successfully avoided laughing out loud at something not intended as a joke (nothing specific, I was just expecting to at some point).
I did, however, correctly guess too many plot revelations. This is unusual for me. It suggests that (a) I have suddenly acquired useful new skills, (b) the film went for the obvious at every turn, (c) I had too much time to think rather than watch, and/or (d) it’s some conspiracy related to Opus Dei.
Whatever, the next albino monk I see shuffling in my direction will get a Paddington stare.
(Oh, the funniest part was before the film started: two ladies were escorted from their seats by a member of staff, the rightful ticketholders having arrived to find their seats occupied. Turns out the ladies were there a day early. I think they were relocated rather than booted out.)
Avaragado’s rating: A rancid old ovine