Thursday, June 08, 2006

THE DA VINCI CODE

I caught the 11:00 showing of The Da Vinci Code today at Roppongi Hills, in an effort to help me relax before my dentist appointment (which didn't stop me from eating a whole bucketful of popcorn). I didn't realize the movie was being shown on the Premier Screen, a slightly smaller version of the regular screen with slightly roomier seats. For these things you are charged a rather hefty 3000 yen a head. The justification is that you get a free drink.

While the iced oolong tea was definitely not worth the extra 1000 yen, I have to say I enjoyed the movie. True - not a classic by any stretch of the imagination, but a solid, Hollywood-style offering that was true to the book. I can't figure out what exactly all the critics had against this innocuous summer blockbuster. Call me simplistic but I start thinking that maybe they're just jealous because they didn't write the book and make a gazillion dollars themselves.

My only complaint about the movie would be that some parts were laughably melodramatic. As much as I love Paul Bettany, the sight of Silas performing corporeal punishment on himself and wincing and groaning with each and every blow was kind of ridiculous. And the dramatic overtures swelling with the velvety strains of strings every 4 bloody minutes ran the risk of turning each climactic scene (and there were a lot of them) into parodies.

But all in all, good clean fun. If you don't fancy the queues or sitting in a packed cinema (or paying 3000 yen for a somewhat less-packed cinema), it wouldn't kill you to wait until it comes out on DVD - but do see it and decide for yourself whether or not you like it.

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