starring Tom Hanks, Felicity Jones, Irrfan Khan, Ben Foster, Sidse Babett Knudsen and Omar Sy
screenplay by David Koepp
directed by Ron Howard
Based on the book by Dan Brown, Inferno is a thriller that sees Harvard University “symbologist” Robert Langdon (Hanks) is racing against the clock to find and neutralize a deadly virus hidden somewhere in the world by an American mad genius entrepreneur who thinks that culling humanity is the only way to save our species from self-induced extinction through environmental destruction. It’s kind of a combination of Malthusian arithmetic with extreme, militant environmentalism. Like the novel, the movie is crap. Badly written and kind of stupid. It’s ridiculously tiring how it transpires in every famous Italian Renaissance city and cathedral a high school student can name. The thrill is supposed t be enhanced by the device of puzzles and clues. Like in The Da Vinci Code, Professor Langdon doesn’t do anything in a simple, straightforward manner. Everything has to be revealed by solving puzzles and exposing a train of clues. Even before the film starts I’m tired of that. I have no patience for it because I do not like things that are challenging for no other reason than just to be challenging. I don’t like crossword puzzles. I don’t like Sudoku. I never liked Rubik’s Cube.
I’ve read Dan Brown’s novel’s The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons, and Inferno. Like Stephen King, his writing is awful! I’ve only read two King books and I shan’t read another. Likewise, I will not be reading any more Dan Brown books. The fact that both these authors are much praised and remunerated is a statement about the public’s taste, or lack thereof.
I saw this movie at a Toho Cinema in Ebina City. I was there for a couple of part-time jobs with almost a four-hour break between the two. So I dropped round the nearby cinema to see if there was an English movie showing that I could kill the time with. Inferno was my only practical option because the start time was just as I arrived, and the running time was within my window. But I knew it was an iffy proposition because it was a Dan Brown Robert Langdon story. I was right.
Irrfan Khan is great. I admire him: his looks, his vice, his way of moving, his style of dress. I’ve loved him in every English film I’ve seen him in. He’s cool. He’s a scene robber. I mean, when he shares the screen with a star like Tom Hanks, or with Chris Pratt or B.D. Wong (Jurassic World), he naturally dominates the scene.