I really want to attend a Robert Langdon class. His character is interesting and Tom Hanks is perfect for the role. We saw him uncover the Holy Grail in The Da Vinci Code, stop an assassination plot in Angels and Demons, and now he is back to put a stop to a global event which threatens to wipe out a major portion of the world population. There are clues that only he can see and only he can save the world. The same formula has been used for so many years and at times we enjoy these stories, other times we just shake our heads. With Inferno either one of those options will cross our minds; either we can enjoy the twists and turns or just laugh at them.
Dan Brown who was the author of The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons also wrote Inferno. Personally, I really enjoyed the novels. The films aren’t a bad representation of the written material, it’s just different in good ways and bad. Inferno begins when Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) wakes up in a hospital with a head wound, a god awful headache, and visions that can be only described a hellish. He doesn’t understand why he can’t remember anything then comes to realize that he quite far from his home in Cambridge; he’s actually in Florence, Italy! His doctor Sienna Brooks (Felicity Jones) explains to Langdon that he has a severe injury. Langdon is confused and before he can even get himself together, a cop appears and starts shooting at him. Langdon and Brooks make a daring escape in the process.
Back at his doctor’s office, Langdon is able to clean himself up and dresses himself in rather nice attire. He ends up finding a tube inside his jacket that is revealed to contain a painting of The Map of Hell by Sandro Botticelli which is based on the story of The Divine Comedy. Being a professor of Symbology and History, he knows the story all too well. Upon looking at the painting some things are different, it turns out that clues added into the painting by someone else. But where do the clues lead to? Langdon and Brooks study the painting and reveal what is actually going on.
A man by the name of Bertrand Zombrist (Ben Foster) makes a radical claim to reduce the human population in order to save it from overpopulation in the future years. It is soon revealed that he created something to achieve this sinister goal and left clues behind for his followers to find in the event that something was to happen to him. Indeed it does within the opening credits. What follows thereafter is Langdon and Brooks, who proves to be a worthy asset to Langdon, searching for clues all over Florence to find the deadly virus.
Along the way are people from the World Health Organization who are also after Langdon. We have Christoph Bouchard (Omar Sy) and Elizabeth Sinskey (Sidse Babett Knudsen) who are in hot pursuit trying to find the deadly virus and after Langdon for reasons that aren’t revealed until they are needed. We also have Harry Sims (Irrfan Khan) a CEO of a very private security organization on hot pursuit as well. As the film runs it’s course we are given many twists and turns, if you’ve read the book then you already know to expect them. As a filmgoer, you can either be surprised or find yourself laughing at the screen.
Verdict: 3 out of 5
What Inferno lacks is the intricate puzzles that were present in the earlier films, sure there are some here, but they aren’t the main focus of the film. Inferno utilizes the chase scenes mixed in with clues and occasions of introducing new characters. While this isn’t a bad film nor a great film, I suppose people who rather enjoy the Dan Brown novels are the ones really going to see this film. Other than the chase scenes that occur throughout the film, director Ron Howard (The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons) does a good job with some great camerawork showing the gorgeous buildings in Florence and other such places. Robert Langdon is a great character who can really solve a puzzle, and Inferno is more about chases and character development in the end, which isn’t a bad thing, but man do I miss solving those puzzles. Dan Brown announced another Robert Langdon story prior to this film’s release, I can only hope that more puzzles will be offered to us this time around.