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The Sacred Feminine?

The critics may have not liked "The Da Vinci Code" but surely they have been able to handle complex material before. At least that is what they claim was the problem. After all, Fibonnaci numbers are only used to access a Swiss bank account.Todd McCarthy at Variety wrote a scanty review of little insight. Problem with pic is not the information but the potboiler approach by helmer Ron Howard. Second, there is NO chemistry between Hanks and Tatou. You can feel her warmth but Hanks is somewhere else down the rabbit hole without Alice.

Robert Langdon's (Hanks) lecture to Paris students starts off the film, but you don't get the sense these are Parisians he's hurling out questions to but Harvard hotshots. Howard and Hanks both expressed their concerns that the film will be boycotted by religious protestors, but the real problem is, will the advocates of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code be satisfied? The film is not really horrible, but not really captivating. Howard goes for some cheap thrills to pump up the volume of the detective/mystery but there is little of the "sacred feminine" to sustain the film. Perhaps if Tatou had more leg room and the background to Mary Magdelene whose remains may have been the Holy Grail(!) the film might have had some cinematic magic. The visual rendering of Da Vinci's Last Supper with the V space between Jesus and Mary Magdelene is perhaps one of those instances. As it is the pursuit of "innocents" by bad guys- robed, shielded, caned and clothed, takes full stage, which makes the pic mundane. Now, for Howard's penance he shall do......


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About Moira Sullivan

Sullivan Moira
(Swedish Film Critic's Association, FIPRESCI)

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