_5_-_The_DaVinci_Code - I WATCHED THIS ON PURPOSE The Da...

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I WATCHED THIS ON PURPOSE The Da Vinci Code By Josh Modell May 20, 2009 Sometimes, even The A.V. Club isn’t impervious to the sexy allure of ostensible cultural garbage. Which is why there's I Watched This On Purpose, our feature exploring the impulse to spend time with trashy-looking yet in some way irresistible entertainments, playing the long odds in hopes of a real reward and a good time. Cultural infamy: Peep this number: $758 million. That’s what The Da Vinci Code grossed. No amount of bad press and reactionary religious folks could stop this thing at the box office. Here’s the thing, though: I still know next to nothing about it. I only have a vague idea of what the bestselling book is about (a dude cracking a code in the Mona Lisa that leads to some shady dealings at the Vatican?), and I don’t think I’ve had any discussions about the movie with anybody except Keith Phipps, who told me he turned it off. So on the one hand, there’s a lot of negative critical thought out there (our own Tasha Robinson damned it with the faintest of praise, saying it “isn’t terrible”), but on the other, could $760 million worth of people be completely wrong? (Yeah, they probably could.) I went into this thing with an open mind, yet low-ish expectations, hoping for some twisty- turny fun and maybe some Indiana Jones-like (pre-Crystal Skull—fuck you, Crystal Skull) adventure. For the record, Da Vinci Code has a 48 on Metacritic (and perhaps worse yet, a 5.7 reader rating) and a 24 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. Also: PG-13, a.k.a. the rating of doom. Curiosity factor: I’ve had a lingering desire to watch The Da Vinci Code since it came out way back in 2006, but that desire never really started burning. I’ve probably watched hundreds of movies since then, and Da Vinci has never made it near the top of my Netflix queue. The impetus to finally do it: Angels & Demons. I don’t know why, because I probably won’t see that one until well after the fact, either. Also, there’s that box-office
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_5_-_The_DaVinci_Code - I WATCHED THIS ON PURPOSE The Da...

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