Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Da Vinci Code Movie Falls Flat-- the Early Returns
Maybe Ronnie Howard has done us all a favor. The early pre-screening reviews of the critics are out--- and they are all negative. All of them. In fact, on the Rottentomatoes.com tomato meter it gets a 0%. I am sure this will change, but 0% from the first 7-8 major reviews is lower than dirt, lower than "RV", the lowest in living memory. Furthermore, the reviewers could hardly be accused of religious bias. They range from the lead reviewer for Variety, to the lead reviewer for Hollywood Reporter and so on. You will find them at www.rottentomatoes.com/. I must say-- I am stunned. I didn't really think Ron Howard, Akiva Goldman and Tom Hanks could come up with a tedious and boring movie--- but that is what the reviews all say. Stay tuned.
Posted by Ben Witherington at 10:18 AM
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That's what I'm seeing as well. I linked a couple harsh reviews last night:
But as the day goes on, things only get worse for the movie. Reviews are citing laughter, snickering and, like you said, boredom.
The harshest I've seen is here:
I still think this is an opportunity for Christians to shine in our response to the movie and questions from our friends and family.
Perhaps even the most creative and talented team of movie makers cannot overcome such dismal material. A shame though... the same part of me that, moral conflicts be damned, stares curiously at car wrecks had wanted to go see this movie.
Argh...you have to love cut-offs...here's the link again:
Enjoy the today because you can't enjoy it tomorrow!
Yes, I heard that the crowd at Cannes actually laughed at the serious parts and booed at the end. Ouch!
I think the studio must have known in advance that the movie wasn't going to be good-- usually, reviewers get advanced screenings, which didn't happen with this movie. Plus, Tom Hanks recently called the plot of the movie "nonsense." If you can't get one of the friendliest guys in Hollywood to say at least lukewarm things about his own movie for publicity, that's gotta be bad.
Of course, let's also keep in mind that the expectations for this movie are tremendous. The book was so popular, and the advance notice for the movie has run for so long, that it would be difficult for anything to live up to those expectations.
Not that I expect the movie to be any good. At any rate, I refuse to read the book or see the movie, so I guess I'll never know.
P.S. A.O. Scott of the New York Times uses his review of the movie as an excuse to be hilarious:
the sooner that this dark cloud of crap passes over us the better off we will all be...Dave
Kind of makes you wonder if the Da Vinci movie could be the "year 2000 crisis" of 2006. (;->
I heard Hanks say on Entertainment Tonight that whether the movies is a blockbuster or flops totally, in either case, it will be "big news" which, in his opinion, is "good."
That's kind of like saying whether you end up eternally in hell or eternally in heaven, in either case, it's "good."
Hmm, maybe he DOES think that...
I always put the book in the same category of a Grisham novel and I'm trying to think of a good Grisham movie right now, adequate maybe, but good? Let's face it - with Hanks and Howard they tried to dress this book up and make it a mega-hit. IMHO they should have gone really dark and deep with a Riddley Scott-type movie. Oh well - I'll probably save the $7 and 3 hours for something far better anyway.
Garth Franklin offers an interesting point:
"All this eruption about the religious controversy of the novel will most likely disappear once the film is out and people realise that quite frankly the movie is so dull it won't change any opinions, and may if anything bolster interest in religion rather than undermine it."
I have had a couple of people ask me about the canon, etc., but nobody believing that the movie must be true.
You got an honorable mention for Baloney Busting this week. See the details at 5 Slices of Baloney.
Is it just me or does it seem like the church has done most of the marketing for this movie?
This is very interesting and peculiar to me.
I'll be curious to see how the response continues once audiences see the film.
--RC of strangeculture.blogspot.com
For all of us who remember Opie Taylor from The Andy Griffith Show (played by Ron Howard), it is amazing how such a cute little boy could one day become such an agent of confusion. I think Ben said in an earlier post that Sheriff Taylor is not especially happy with young Opie...Dave
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