If Angels & Demons: the novel were a religion, then Angels & Demons: the movie would be blasphemy, heresy, sacrilege. (Of course, the book’s no religion and even if it were i don’t think all those words can be used in that fashion with the same outcome).
The book, in the first place, isn’t so extraordinary and doesn’t look like decent movie material considering all the outlandishness. Ron Howard and co. however weren’t ready to lose out on Da Vinci’s phenomenal collections and may have rightly decided to suitably alter the story for the onscreen adaption.
Right from when the movie started, i was so involved in noticing the differences between the movie and the novel that i forgot to sit back and enjoy it for what it was. So I guess it would be prudent if I didn’t rate the movie as such.
Lots of spoilers in what follows- a customary caution
A few changes from the book:-
1) Langdon isn’t called up to the crime scene by the CERN director to view the branded body of Vittoria’s father.
2) Langdon as a result never visits the CERN facility and is never amazed by its magnificence. The CERN director doesn’t even exist in the movie
3) Vittoria works with some random guy on the antimatter, not with her father. That robbed the movie of “bereaved daughter longing for revenge” passion.
4) In the book, Vittoria is supposed to be in shorts for the entire duration and thereby put the Vatican authorities in a spot. No such fun here.
5) The Killer looked white and cold and cool instead of looking black and powerful and cruel. Vittoria has no personal score to settle with him and the killer doesn’t kidnap Vittoria to use her as a reward.
6) The fourth cardinal, the main preferetti, never dies. He goes on to become the pope instead of the holy dude who conducts the ballot.
7) There are no feelings between Langdon and Vittoria. The scene where he goes looking for her filled with rage when the killer abducts her doesn’t exist. A far cry from the novel which ends with Vittoria promising Langdon heaven due to her yoga prowess. Robs the film of romance and passion once again.
8) Vittoria doesn’t avenge her father’s death by killing the killer. (Derivable form the above points of course). The killer dies in a lame double cross way.
9) Speaking of cross, the fifth illuminati symbol is conveniently altered to lead Langdon and co to the canister. The camerlango doesn’t claim the divine showed him the path, as a result.
10) The illiuminati diamond is never mentioned. As a token of thanks, Langdon is gifted the copy of Diagrama instead of the diamond.
11) Langdon doesn’t jump off the helicopter and survive, thankfully.
12) No words regarding the pope’s usage of artificial insemination either
There were plenty more but bah.. this much is more than enough. Reading a novel just a week before the movie was due was a terrible idea, as you can muster.
Reading the Watchmen novel before going to the movie enhanced the movie experience whereas in this case it completely ruined it. Consequences of a director’s decision to be faithful to the source material or not, I think.
Ron Howard’s not an idiot and some of the altered scenes did bring in humour judging by the reaction of the audience. I was too busy of-course even to laugh during those scenes.