Secrets of the Code (2007)

by | Jun 9, 2007 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

Secrets of the Code (2007)

Narrated by Susan Sarandon
Studio: Sony Pictures 17268
Video: 1.85:1 enhanced for 16:9 widescreen, color
Audio: English DD 5.1, DD 2.0
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
Extras: 2 previews
Length: 90 minutes
Rating: ***

This feature-length documentary explores and challenges many of the points in the popular book The Da Vinci Code and the movie of the same name.  It is also based on a best-selling book covering similar territory, by Dan Burstein.  The documentary doesn’t attempt to be an action movie like The Da Vinci Code and therefore doesn’t fall flat on its face like that one.  However, I can’t say I was captivated by Secrets of the Code – perhaps I’m just not as obsessed about solving “some of the world’s greatest mysteries” as are the scholars, theologians, scientists and historians who offer their opinions in this documentary.

The film does make it clear that there are many exaggerations and explanations in The Da Vinci Code that lack the most basic rational verity. The various talking heads offer their thoughts on such subjects are Mary Magdalene, da Vinci, The Gnostic Gospels, the Holy Grail, Freemasons, the Priory of Sion, the Knights Templars and Opus Dei. The subject of women and the church is discussed at length, with emphasis on the importance of the sacred feminine strain in early religion, which is alleged to have been stamped out by the early Christian church. The supposed marriage of Jesus to Mary Magdalene and her later flight to Provence are explored and generally questioned. The backgrounds for some of the commentators are striking – various crypts and cathedrals and even the Masada mountaintop where a sect of Jews were besieged by the Romans. At the least, this is a thought-provoking film.  Susan Sarandon provides an excellent narration for the impressive visual presentation.

 – John Sunier

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