Inferno is a decent adaptation of Dan Brown’s 2013 novel, with its greatest merit being it did away with the most absurd bits of the original story.
I’d be blunt. I don’t have many good things to say about Dan Brown as a writer. Undeniably, the man has a certain profitably formula, but it is a formula built upon gross exaggerations, hysteria, and wild plot twists that pile on like clockwork. Worst of all, he regularly drenches his prose with chunks of touristy narrations, a lot of which feels to be lifted right off travel brochures. The best place to read his stories, in my opinion, is while you are trapped in a queue when traveling. Oooh! I’m standing on an Illuminati stronghold. AahhhHH! And then you get onto the bus, and you promptly forget all about it.
For these reasons, I had no great expectations for Inferno. I am therefore pleased to say that while the movie was not spared Brown’s typical absurdities, there was at least a genuine effort to keep his worst to a minimum. Tom Hanks and Ron Howard also live up to their reputations as two of showbiz’s more reliable names, and for the first half, there was a genuine suspense reminiscent of 70s spy thrillers. Sadly, this suspense somewhat fizzled towards the end. Which to be fair, is more the fault of the original plot and not movie direction or acting. What also puzzled me was the decision to alter the ending so drastically. All else aside, I thought the ending was the only great thing about the book. Did the producers feel otherwise? Or was the final message of Inferno simply too hellish to be reproduced on the big screen?
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