Based on author Dan Brown’s famous character from his series about a world-renowned professor of religious symbology, Tom Hanks reprises his role as Robert Langdon in the new movie Inferno. In 2006 the first movie of the series, The Da Vinci Code, was released, and viewers were intrigued as they followed Langdon on an action-packed adventure throughout Paris, where he ultimately solved the mystery surrounding the Holy Grail. Then in 2009 came the next story in the series, Angels & Demons, where Langdon found himself summoned to Vatican City to help unravel the events surrounding the sudden disappearance of four members of the Papal conclave. In both films Langdon, along with the support of a beautiful brunette (different character in both films), had to rely on his extensive knowledge of symbols in the Catholic Church to save the day.
My husband Mike and I, who each read The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, rewatched the first two movies about Hanks’ character Langdon before heading to see the new release Inferno. Like the first two movies in the Robert Langdon series, Ron Howard directed Inferno.
Like the previous two films, Professor Langdon finds himself in Europe, this time in Florence, Italy, where he has only hours to save the world from massive devastation. Is he up for the challenge, and can he surmount the innumerable obstacles standing in his way as he races to save humanity? Will his lifelong studies of religious symbology prove to be more powerful than the weapons the “bad guys” have?
Inferno definitely had certain elements that were reminiscent of the first two movies in the series. Langdon once again is being helped by a beautiful brunette. Felicity Jones stars as Dr. Sienna Brooks, who as a child began following the books Langdon wrote about symbology.
Like the first two films, viewers again are introduced to a series of characters who will leave them feeling confounded. Who can be trusted? Who’s telling the truth, and who’s lying? What are the real motives behind those people who seek Langdon’s help? Just when viewers think they’ve got a character figured out, the plot suddenly shifts, making viewers feel just as tense as Langdon.
As Langdon tries to decode the mystery embedded in clues revolving around the Italian poet Dante’s works, particularly his description of the nine circles of hell, viewers will realize that the movie Inferno is actually quite different than the first two films. While The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons focused on topics specifically related to the Catholic Church, Inferno has a religious concept that is well known while also focusing on a present day secular issue that pertains to everyone, regardless of their religious beliefs.
The beginning sequences of the movie felt purposely confusing, distressing, uncomfortable, and intense as the beloved character Langdon found himself in a hellish situation, and as the movie progressed I felt like I was sitting on the edge of my seat. Compared to the previous Robert Langdon films, this movie’s action scenes were more fierce, and they seemed to dominate more of the screen time.
Mike and I both were riveted through the duration of the film, and we thoroughly enjoyed the stunning scenery of Europe’s churches and museums, reminding us of our own travels there. After the movie, Mike shared, “Inferno felt more frantic than the first two films, but stayed true to Dan Brown’s books with lots of intrigue, conspiracy, and mystery.”
Without giving away the ending, as we walked out of the theater, we overheard a couple discussing Inferno, commenting to one another that the ending of the film was different than the ending in the book. Since I didn’t read Inferno, I can’t say for sure whether they were right or wrong, but I will say that I recommend the movie even if you haven’t seen the first two films in the series.
Movie times: click here
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Director: Ron Howard
Actors: Tom Hanks, Felicity Jones, Irrfan Khan
Rating: PG-13 for sequences of action and violence, disturbing images, some language, thematic elements and brief sensuality
Running Time: 2 hours 1 minute