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WesternSFA
Inferno
Cast: Tom Hanks, Felicity Jones, Irfan Khan, Sidse Knudsen
Directed by: Ron Howard
Based on the novel by Dan Brown
Rated: PG-13
Running Time: 121 Minutes
Release Date: October 28, 2016

“The darkest places in Hell are reserved for those who remain neutral in times of moral crisis.”

Ironically, that quote is used by the villain, a mad scientist who thinks the only way to save mankind is by destroying most of it.  His point is that overpopulation will cause man to go extinct unless drastic measures are taken…by him.

The mission of Robert Langdon is to unravel the clues and stop the drastic measures.  This is the fourth in the series that began with The DaVinci Code.  This time, not only are the stakes the fate of the world but Langdon is seriously handicapped by amnesia. 

None of the above is a spoiler to anyone who saw the previews. Soon Langdon is not only struggling with the mystery, he is accused of stealing a priceless artifact which he doesn’t remember.

I don’t think there’s any double crosses in this movie. Instead, there are triple crosses and quadruple crosses.  No one is who they seem to be and Langdon has to figure it all out when he can’t trust his own brain.

Meanwhile, the audience is treated to some fantastic scenery in several cities, information about Dante’s Inferno and finally, a visit to the city underneath Istanbul.  Ever since I learned of its existence, I’ve wanted to see it and this movie gives you a travelogue. 

I mentioned Dante’s Inferno.  Obviously, it gives the book and movie their name for it’s soon clear that The Inferno holds the vital clue – if only Langdon can figure out what the vital clue is.

The movie works as a nice, gripping thriller. All the cast are good.  Tom Hanks, of course is always great. Felicity Jones, who plays Sienna, his partner in the action, is starring in Rogue One, the next Star Wars.

It got a lot of negative reviews. Apparently, everyone who liked the novel hated the movie. I guess this is a warning that if you’ve read the novel, be wary of the movie.

A problem is that the issue of the very real problem of overpopulation which is brought up so prominently, ends up being allowed to fade away without comment.  It keeps the movie from having an entirely satisfactory ending. The style of the movie is that of a mindless action thriller, only it’s not mindless. Leaving that aside, the movie works.

Reviewed by: Marian Powell

 

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