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Angels and Demons: Sequel to the Da Vinci Code
Angels and Demons, released 2009, directed by Ron Howard is the sequel to the controversial movie Da Vinci Code. Like the Da Vinci Code, the film Angels and Demons, based on the book authored by Dan brown, opens up a great big can of worms based on much speculation as well as interpretive facts. Angels and Demons makes the viewer think and shows a possibility of something that could (or did it?) have happened. I like these types of movies. As far as the religious aspects in both of these movies, I feel Ron Howard handled them with the utmost of care.
Angles and Demons begins years after we left off in the film Da Vinci Code. The Vatican has been completely uncooperative with Dr. Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks). Refused his request to visit the Vatican's vault for research purposes so Dr. Robert Langdon could complete a book he wanted to author. The Vatican did not appreciate the way "certain mysteries" were handled. This is why, right after the death of the current Pope, a courier from the Vatican suddenly visiting and asking for his help with a very "delicate matter" comes as a complete surprise to Dr. Robert Langdon. When Dr. Langdon is shown a paper with a very special symbol (that is known to be connected with the secret society of the Illuminati) on it, Dr. Robert Langdon realizes this is his chance for the doors the Vatican had closed to become open. Dr. Langdon agrees to accompany the courier to Italy. This decision brings Dr. Langdon into the Vatican, and enlists him in a rescue mission (for those being considered for Pope and a container holding anti-matter) of the utmost importance, not just for the church but in saving the entire city of Rome, Italy. Once again, Dr. Robert Langdon must decipher symbols that lead to many historical and sacred places in Rome, and the Vatican does open its vault (where clues are hidden in written works by Galileo).
The subplot of Angels and Demons is about Vatican politics and intrigue. It surrounds the priest Camerlengo (Ewan McGregor) who is acting as Pope until one of the "Preferatti" are chosen as Pope. Camerlengo is a devout Catholic and the adopted son of the deceased Pope. The reason he was chosen to act as Pope during the interim was because Camerlengo was the closest to the Pope now deceased. This subplot shows the friction between the Cardinals and Camerlengo each time Camerlengo makes a decision that normally would be a Papal decision. The viewer also watches Camerlengo literally lock up the Cardinals, per Church tradition, so they can figure out which of the "Preferatti" will be the next Pope. This subplot basically portrays the method of how a Pope is chosen with a few speculative whys. Very fascinating.
Angels and Demons message was a completely different one from that in the Da Vinci Code. In this film, Cardinal Strauss (expertly portrayed by Armin Mueller-Stahl) says, "Don't judge us harshly. We are a church comprised of humans. Humans are fallible." This is not something I personally would have expected anyone from the Vatican to say. Came as a complete surprise as it was stated to the main character, Dr. Robert Langdon.
The rest of the primary cast included were (in order listed by credits): Ayelet Zurer (Dr. Vittoria Vetra, anti-matter physicist and assists Dr. Robert Langdon with the rescuing of the container holding anti-matter), Stellan Skarsgard (Commander Richter of the Swiss Army that protects the Vatican), Pierfrancesco Favino (Inspector Olivetti of the Rome Police), and Nikolas Lie Kaas (the assassin who is suspected of having Illuminati affiliations, kidnaps the Preferatti, and hides the canister holding the anti-matter).
Angels and Demons is rated PG-13 and is 2 hours 18 minutes in length. This movie is extremely fast paced; the time spent is not noticed. Great special affects! Cast and crew created a spectacular performance! My personal recommendation is this movie be seen by adults only because of the delicate "religious" subject matter and horrific crime scenes. Must be viewed with an open mind.