Friday, May 15, 2009

Wallbanger Made Palatable

I just got back from seeing Angels & Demons which, I'll be honest, I fully expected to dislike. I was not a fan of the book. In spite of Mr. Brown's provoking plots, when I read his books they all-t00-frequently find themselves flying across the room to impact the wall. Angels & Demons made that trip more than most.

The movie, however, wasn't half bad. I was downright tickled by the filmmakers' decision to remove the single stupidest part of the book. They did not, sadly, manage to extract all moments of idiocy (we're on a clock, people! Now is not the time for random exposition!), but the worst violation of the laws of physics did not survive the transition to the silver screen. Thank God.

**Spoiler Alert** In the book, our hero Robert Langdon is in the helicopter with the Camerlengo. He leaps from it at altitude and survives, by using wind-resistance and some sort of tarpaulin window cover, in one of the most idiotic plot devices known to man. I had to stop reading for hours after that little gem. I'm sorry, Mr. Hanks, but even Bruce Willis at his most Die Hardy couldn't survive that. Luckily, the filmmakers saw fit to pull that scene and have the "heroic" Camerlengo fly off all by his lonesome. Much better.

Breaking the laws of physics is only a problem if you've set your world up to obey them, as Mr. Brown has. Wolverine can jump on top of a helicopter and I'll think it's cool. Captain Kirk can sky dive out of a space ship (awesome! so awesome!) and I'll cheer. But you have to obey the rules of your universe. That is a big pet peeve of mine, as a reader and a movie-goer. That and supposedly intelligent people behaving in unbelievably stupid ways.

What are your biggest pet peeves? What will send your books flying across the room to make friends with the wall?**

**Note: Throwing books across the room not recommended for e-books, as your reading device will likely suffer.

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