Movie Review: The Da Vinci Code

3 07 2006

The Da Vinci Code is a modern-day, fast paced treasure hunt with the desired treasure being evidence to discount the claim of Christ’s deity and the very basis of Christianity. 


As far as entertainment goes, this movie has most everything a treasure hunt film needs.  It has the quick thinking Harvard professor, the pretty lady who runs around in high heels and magically never twists her ankle, a creative storyline, and plenty of suspense along the way to keep you engaged. 


Unfortunately though, The Da Vinci Code is not only about maps, ancient piles of gold, and spies in the same cartoony way the Indiana Jones movies are so enjoyably portrayed.  For the plot to thicken, Christianity has to be disproved and exposed as a fraud, because if it can’t be disproved, this treasure hunt and all that it’s based on, falls completely apart. 


The Da Vinci Code not only discolors history and presents the viewer with faulty evidence, it also shows that the “right” way to examine history and fine art is through the same scrutinizing lens a detective would look at evidence at a crime scene through.  It makes sense when a detective who knows a crime was committed in that location looks for evidence to determine what happened and then tries to piece the clues together, but when someone takes random pieces of art, a few out-of-context statements from an old document and tries to connect the dotes into making a story, it’s not even logical.


The evidence the movie uses to support its claims are summed up nicely by a quote from the move itself, “The mind sees things as it wants to.”  The movie takes things out of context and proudly displays them as hard evidence.  To paraphrase a man I heard give his opinion on the movie and the book, “It is true that we are all entitled to our own opinions, but we are not entitled to our own facts.”               


Due to the overwhelming response of the Christian community, I had expected the story to be more persuasive in its faulty logic.  Considering the confusion that has come from this story, I hope for the sake of the people who’ve been deceived that the book lays out a better case for its argument than the movie did.  And that the confusion isn’t merely due to the lack of education in history, art and the history of Christianity in our society.


Christianity –especially Catholicism—is shown in a very poor light, and what’s even more disturbing is the characters who are presented as the truthful and kind ones are involved in the occult, which paints it in a rosy view.   It also shares information about some of the occult rituals and pagan gods and goddesses throughout the movie.


Summing it up, The Da Vinci Code is an entertaining film, but it has the potential to seriously alter people’s thoughts and views regarding the history, art, and Christianity shown in the movie if the viewer isn’t already grounded in the truth.  If someone is completely unfamiliar with the style and history of the Renaissance era, the correct way to study and view art, and the history of Christianity, a naïve onlooker could be swept up in the suspense and enjoyment of the film and never even know they’re walking around with a distorted and colored view because of a movie they enjoyed. 


In a time when art, history and religion or merely looked at as school subjects, and the media shapes the views of most of the population, a movie with so many flaws is a danger to not only the thought processes of individuals, but also the way history and the arts are remembered and appreciated in not only our own generation, but in the ones to come.




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