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The Da Vinci Code

Released

Latest Home Video

Apr 28, 2009

MPAA Rating:

PG-13


Run Time:

148

Cast

Tom Hanks

Audrey Tautou

Studio

2006 Sony Pictures

Still shot from the movie: The Da Vinci Code.

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Reviewed by

OverallC-
ViolenceD
SexC-
LanguageC+
Drugs/AlcoholB+
Run Time148

Making the Grades

If there is one thing The Da Vinci Code hasn't run short of, it's hype. For more than a year before gracing the silver screen, previews and promotions have been dangled in front of the public eye. Meanwhile, opinions from religious organizations regarding the story's re-writing of the role of Jesus Christ and other New Testament figures also increased as the release date drew nigh. And then there's the huge audience who have read the novel by Dan Brown, upon which this movie is based, who anticipated seeing their favorite book put to film.

For those who have only heard the hoopla, the controversial plot goes something like this:

Professor Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) is a man who lives to break codes and discover the secret patterns of numerals, letters, and symbols in the monotony of daily life. He's in France making a presentation and signing his new book when the local police approach and tell him that his friend has been murdered. Accompanying the officials to the Louvre, Langdon is shocked to see the victim's naked body covered in various cryptic signs written in the man's own blood (of which we see a great deal).

Also at the grande mus0xE9e is Sophie Neveu (Audrey Tautou), who is introduced as the granddaughter of the deceased. Begging his trust, the young woman passionately explains that he is the chief suspect in the investigation. Offering to help Langdon avoid arrest, the two escape the museum, and flee into the streets of Paris. But what the professor doesn't know is he's embarked on a far more dangerous journey than a run from the authorities. His cryptographic skills will pull him into a scheme full of twists and turns, with a climax involving the divinity of Jesus Christ, his relationship with Mary Magdalene, and whether direct descendents of the "Savior of Man" walk the Earth today.

If you're a parent wondering if this historically set drama holds concerns for family viewing, the answer is "yes," from various perspectives. First, Christians -- especially Catholics -- may be offended, or at least troubled, by the implications regarding Christ's life, and the claims as to whom he left in charge of his church. (Without giving too much away, the film says it wasn't Peter.) Yet even those not weighing the religious doctrines, will still find bothersome issues like the particularly gory violence and sexual content.

Self-mutilation, murders with guns, and scenes of harsh hand-to-hand violence involving men and women are depicted throughout. Another male character appears completely naked (seen mostly from the rear) and physically abuses and mutilates his body as a sign of his dedication to Jesus. As well, there are discussions of satanic and sexual rituals, and a brief depiction of a couple under a blanket on an altar presumably having sex.

These disquieting moments punctuate what some will view as an interesting adventure, which simply happens to use historical religious characters as a backdrop. Heavy on dialogue, the over two hour run time travels by quickly, and you won't want to miss a word or you'll be left behind.

Possibly audiences' greatest apprehension should be with a far broader problem than this film. Whether it is the retelling of Pocahontas, the voyage of Christopher Columbus, or the American Civil War, we risk having popular culture become our new history books. Movies like this contain just enough facts to allow viewers to believe what they see might be true, instead of recognizing them as works of imagination. Discerning fact from fiction is one code parents should be actively helping their children to crack.

Discussion Ideas After The Movie

Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about The Da Vinci Code.

Do you think movies and media have the power to change our perspective of history?

You may want to research some of the topics brought forth in this movie using religious texts along with Internet resources. You can begin by checking this link for more information on the Knights Templar, an organization that has become embellished in many movies and works of literature.

Canadian Movie Ratings

BC
SK
14A VIOLENCE.
AB 14A Violence. Mature Theme.
MB 14A
ON 14A Violence.
QC 13+
NB
NS
NL
PE
14A Mature Theme. Violence.

Canadian Home Video Rating: 14A

Watch @ Home

Details on home video releases of The Da Vinci Code...

Fans of the film and Dan Brown’s best selling book will find plenty of information to sort through with the DVD release of The DaVinci Code. With almost as may special features as a museum has artifacts, here’s a list of what’s on display:

Featurettes:

  • First Day on the Set with Ron Howard
  • A Discussion with Dan Brown, author of the novel, The Da Vinci Code.
  • A Portrait of Langdon (And how Tom Hanks was chosen to play this iconic character.)
  • Who is Sophie Neveu? (And how actress Audrey Tautou got the part.)
  • Unusual Suspects (A look at the international cast.)
  • Magical Places (Featuringthe film’s locations.)
  • Close- up on Mona Lisa
  • The Filmmaking Experience Part 1 & 2 (Ron Howard and the excitement of bringing the book to the screen.)
  • The Codes of 0x201CThe Da Vinci Code0x201D
  • The Music of 0x201CThe Da Vinci Code0x201D

DVD ROM Features:

Demo of the Sony Pictures PC game, The Da Vinci Code Puzzle Game

Presented in either full or wide screen, the disc offers audio tracks in English (Dolby Digital 5.1 and DS), French (Dolby Digital 5.1) and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 ), with subtitles in English, French and Spanish.

Blu-ray Notes: The Da Vinci Code: Extended Cut

Release Date: 28 April 2009

The Da Vinci Code: Extended Cut on Blu-ray Disc hits the home video market just days before the theatrical release of the movie’s sequel, Angels & Demons. Along with 28 minutes of previously unseen footage, this package includes:

- BD-Live Cinechat

- First look at Angels & Demons (5-minute segment introduced by director Ron Howard)

- Unlocking the Code (interactive picture-in-picture feature offering cast and crew interviews, behind the scenes footage, storyboards, photos and trivia)

- Ron Howard commentary on selected scenes.

- Featurettes:

-First Day on the Set with Ron Howard

-The Filmmakers’ Journey Part 1

-The Filmmakers’ Journey Part 2

-A Discussion With Dan Brown

-A Portrait of Langdon

-The Codes of The Da Vinci Code

-Who is Sophie Neveu?

-The Music of The Da Vinci Code

-Unusual Suspects

-Book To Screen

-Magical Places

-The Da Vinci Props

-Close-up on Mona Lisa

-The Da Vinci Sets

-Re-creating Works of Art

-Scoring The Da Vinci Code

-The Visual Effects World of The Da Vinci Code

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