Grail Hunting
The Da Vinci Code
Review by Ross Anthony

Overall, the film feels far more like TV fodder than something worthy of the big screen. The plot is intriguing and the acting pretty good, but the final finish is lackluster.

Even with Tom Hanks and Amelie, I found myself calculating the time the film would conclude so I could hang out with my friends. But fortunately, before I could finish my sigh, Ian McKellen made it to screen. I must say, he saved the production. His is a wonderfully eccentric, giddily thinking character and Ian breaks him onto that tan brown landscape of this film with striking turquoise brilliance.

As for production itself, well, I was a bit embarrassed for Ron Howard. More than just a few shots were out of focus or fuzzy for other reason. Additionally, many of the action sequences were lifeless and ended with the intellectuals getting the upper hand of hardened musclemen -- absolutely ridiculous. I would never have thought such a supposed thinking personís film would insult the thinking person.

As for the religious component -- as the Hanks character says in the film -- theories, all theories.

Ironically, I'd forgotten who was directing this film, and as the code breaking special effects began to unfold, I was reminded of A Beautiful Mind. But since Da Vinci Code so lacked that kind of cinematic intensity, I said to myself, "I wish Ron Howard were directing this picture." Then as the credits rolled, I saw his name -- but never his touch. Did he have a bad day? A feud with the cinematographer? A lack of interest? Or did the studio just borrow his name? Was he rushed? Ron, what happened here?

Want a better Grail Hunting film? See Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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  • The Da Vinci Code. Copyright © 2006.
  • Starring Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou, Ian McKellen, Jean Reno, Paul Bettany, Alfred Molina, Jurgen Prochnow, Jean-Yves Berteloot.
  • Directed by Ron Howard.
  • Screenplay by Akiva Goldsman. Based on the novel by Dan Brown.
  • Produced by Brian Grazer & John Calley at Columbia/Imagine.

Grade..........................B- (1.5/4)

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Copyright © 1998-2022 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Monday, 23-Oct-2006 11:22:10 PDT