Regardless of his known relationship with the Roman Catholic Church, renowned symbologist Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) is called again to decipher clues to a monumental conspiracy. The Pope has died and before a conclave can take place, the four main hopefuls are kidnapped. A sinister threat of their hourly deaths, with the destruction of Vatican City, is discharged as a showy revenge plan by a group known as the Illuminati. With time of the essence, Langdon and his companion, physicist Vittoria Vetra (Ayelet Zurer) must navigate the streets of Rome to pick apart the hidden clues that will take them to dark discoveries and secret truths.
Tom Hanks (Castaway) is back as Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon in his first but second adventure Angels & Demons (bookies will know). This story is less controversial because it circles around a conspiracy theory that is always put down as a theory in comparison to The Da Vinci Code, which ultimately pokes a whole through the Catholic Church’s pulmonary vein. It struck a nerve, leaving many people up in arms. Ron Howard decided to do an action flick with this one set in Rome and Vatican City, showing off Basilica and St Peter’s Square; very different to the books but still enjoyable.
Ewan McGregor (The Impossible) in this movie is sensational. He even outshines Tom Hanks truth be told. He steals each scene he’s in as Camerlengo Patrick McKenna. He’s essentially in charge of the Papal Office while the other cardinals are in the Sistine Chapel to elect a new Pope. Even though he’s shady as heck, you can’t help but like him. McGregor’s performance is the highlight of the entire movie. Ewan McGregor is a stellar villain indeed. With a cast of talent, Ron Howard does a great job of directing a story that was easier to understand than Da Vinci Code. For first time watchers, The Da Vinci Code is a hard slog, but easier to digest for readers of the books in comparison to Angels & Demons where many film watchers would argue is the better film.
Dan Brown’s novel Angel’s & Demons is excellent, but the Da Vinci Code is better in my opinion. It gives many good points in the centuries old argument of Science V Religion as well as a lot of information that Brown has linked together through critical research. The storyline is relatively simple yet it sucks you in. One of the corporations that The Church has wronged in history (so many) is out for retribution. Four cardinals of the Church are kidnapped and to be put to death at specific times. Langdon and company are out to stop this from happening.
The score is ace, as is the cinematography. But the greatest thing about this picture is the conclusion. I’m a sucker for surprise endings, books and films alike. This movie’s ending wraps up the ending in pretty wrapping paper and puts a bow on top for kicks. I can safely say that religious people won’t be triggered by this movie in contrast to what occurred with The Da Vinci Code. Angels & Demons is much lighter on that note. With good performances, excellent cinematography and a wonderful musical score, Angels & Demons is a great flick to watch in the run up to Inferno.