The Da Vinci Code
Media reports about the movie.
Dan Brown, "The Da Vinci Code"
reviews or order the hardcover book safely from Amazon.com online book store.
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||2005-DEC-07: Roman Catholic priest comments on consultant role:
Father Richard McBrien, a theology professor and Roman Catholic priest, is
employed by Sony Pictures as a consultant for the Da Vinci Code movie. On
2003-NOV-03, he contributed to an ABC Documentary "Jesus, Mary and Da Vinci."
His participation generated a great deal of emotional reaction from persons "across
the religious spectrum." He wrote in a DEC-01 column about the concept that
Jesus married Mary Magdalene:
"I think what bothered most critics was the fact that the question
[of Jesus being married] was even being raised and that I was open to
discussing it." 1
||2006-MAR-23: Sony Pictures start public-relations program: Aware of the strong probability of anger by
conservative Christians against the Da Vinci Code movie, Sony and the film's
producer -- Imagine Entertainment -- hired Grace Hill Media to create a web
http://www.thedavincidialogue.com They contain essays written by about
four dozen religious leaders from Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant
denominations. Opus Dei was asked to contribute, but they declined the
offer. The web site has taken on controversial topics within The Da Vinci
Code. They offer resources for congregations and para-church groups 2
||2006-MAY-16: France: Movie premieres at Cannes Film Festival: The
movie "The Da Vinci Code" premiered at Cannes on Tuesday
Director Ron Howard said:
"There's no question that the film is likely to be upsetting to some
people. My advice since virtually no one has really seen the movie yet,
is to not go see the movie if you think you're going to be upset. Wait,
talk to someone who has seen it. Discuss it,. And then arrive at an
opinion about the movie itself."
When the cast were asked if they believed that Jesus and Mary Magdalene
were married, Tom Hanks commented: "Well, I wasn't around."3
||2006-MAY-16: Critics pan movie: Movie critics were not
kind in their reviews of The Da Vinci Code:
||Baz Barnnigboye, London Daily Mail: "If you want so see a movie
about the Holy Grail, see Indiana Jones."
||Lina Hamchaoui, IRN radio: "...really disappointing. The dialogue
||Kirk Honeycutt, Hollywood Reporter: "Da Vinci never rises to the
level of a guilty pleasure."
||Christy Lemire, Associated Press: "Hanks...can't work miracles
when he's got nothing to work with."
||Stephen Schaefer, Boston Herald: "Nothing really works...It's
certainly not fun."
||Joe Utichi, FilmFocus.co.uk: "A flawed and lifeless adaptation."
||Timeout: "A movie marriage made in Hell."
||Variety: "Lurid material sucked dry by a desperately solemn
||2006-MAY-16: France: Actors' comments during press conference:
The focus of the press conference following the world premiere was on the
movie's potential to cause a controversy.|
||Tom Hanks, the lead actor, said: "There's no doubt about it that it
is controversial to a degree. But again, it's to a degree....It still comes
down to a conversation between two people in a dark and secret room, And
there have been a lot of conversations like that in the world....[The film
is] a great opportunity to discuss and to perhaps clarify one's own
individual feelings about his place in the universe and in the cosmos, as
well as in the mind of God...This is not a documentary."
||Ron Howard, the director, said: "People who think things are true
might be more dangerous than people who ponder the possibilities of maybe
they are and maybe they aren't...There's no question that the film is likely
to be upsetting to some people. My advice, since virtually no one has really
seen the movie yet, is to not go se the movie if you think you're going to
be upset...This is supposed to be entertainment...It's not theology. I don't
think it should be understood as such. Yes, it stimulates conversation, but
that's what good fiction does. And I think that, in that spirit, it's
ultimately a positive kind of story."
||Alfred Molina, who plays Roman Catholic Bishop Aringarosa, said: "Everyone
that bought this books bought this in the fiction department...I think it's
been pressure from the media to find a story that somehow feels juicy and
sexy. In fact, the truth is, the controversy hasn't materialized."
||Ian McKellen, who plays Sir Leigh Teabing, commented on an angle that
has not been widely discussed: "When I put the book down, I thought:
'What a load of p0otential codswallop.' And that's still going on in my
mind. I'm very happy to believe that Jesus was married. And I know the
Catholic Church has problems with gay people and I thought this would be
absolute proof that Jesus was not gay." 4
||2006-MAY-19: The movie is released worldwide -- almost: The movie "The Da Vinci Code"
released to theatres in the U.S., the UK, Canada. Elsewhere in the world, it was
released on various dates, ranging from MAY-17 to MAY-20. It will be
screened in Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar on JUN-06. A
video game is being created by 2k Games; it will be released at the same
time as the movie. 5|
||2006-MAY-19: Screenwriter Akiva Goldsman comments on his work:
Commenting on the controversy swirling around the movie, Goldsman said: |
"I am intrigued, certainly. Anybody to whom it will be offensive or
unpleasant, I hope they avoid it. Clearly our attempt has never been to
create or cause despair. What I hope is that people who like to have a
fun afternoon at the movies can play around with ideas of how history
might have or might not have played out."
He recalls only one protestor during the movie production: an outraged,
motorcycle-riding nun who turned out to be an impostor. 6
||2006-MAY-19: Christian Science Monitor's film
critic not impressed: Peter Rainer writes, in part:
"With the glorious exception of Ian McKellen, who plays the Grail
expert Sir Leigh Teabing with cranky panache, the rest of the cast is
dull. That includes Jean Reno as a French police captain and Alfred
Molina as a bishop in the Catholic sect Opus Dei."
"Hanks never cracks a smile, as if to do so would expose the shallowness of
the material. In what is perhaps a sop to the book's critics, Robert has been
made more disputatious and spiritually inclined. Tautou, who is given little to
do but look pretty, is colorless."
"In the book, both Sophie and Robert are constantly exercising their wits in
order to solve a series of cryptographic puzzles. In the movie, the
puzzle-solving is kept to a minimum. What this means is that the film lacks the
deductive appeal of the book - the way it compelled you to match wits with the
||2006-MAY-23: Another movie planned: Sony allegedly is planning to
make a movie of another novel by author Dan Brown. It will be of his year
2000 novel "Angels and Demons" which involves a secret group, the
Illuminati, trying to plant a bomb at the Vatican. 8
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above
essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
Kate Antonacci, "Professor consults for 'The Da Vinci Code'," The
Observer, 2005-DEC-07, at:
John Lippman, "Da Vinci Damage Control," Wall Street Journal,
http://online.wsj.com/ (Subscription required).
"Film premiere sparks protests," Associated Press, 2006-MAY-17.
Geoff Pevere, "It's just a movie, folks," Toronto Star, 2006-MAY-18,
"Worldwide Release Dates, The Da Vinci Code," at:
Ron Dicker, "Cracking 'The Da Vinci Code'," Forward magazine, 2006-MAY-19,
Peter Rainer, "Da invincible 'Code' falters on the big screen," The
Christian Science Monitor, 2006-MAY-19, at:
"After 'Da Vinci' success, Sony plans film based on another novel by
Brown," Agence France Presse, 2006-MAY-23. at:
Copyright © 2006 by Ontario Consultants on Religious
Originally posted: 2006-MAY-18
Latest update: 2006-MAY-27
Author: B.A. Robinson