Angels and Demons

Rated 3.0

Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) is recruited by the Vatican to investigate the kidnapping of four leading cardinals—and the threat to destroy Vatican City with a stolen antimatter bomb. Dan Brown’s original novel was a prequel to The Da Vinci Code, but the movie is a sequel—and a bit of an improvement. Director Ron Howard and writer Akiva Goldsman (co-writing this time with David Koepp) have regained their moviemaking smarts (and Hanks has gotten a decent haircut) in the three years since the dreadful Da Vinci. The movie is still too long and ponderous for its own good, but Howard and Co. gloss over or eliminate most of the more outlandish howlers in Brown’s preposterous story, and the supporting cast helps: Ewan McGregor, Ayelet Zurer, Stellan Skarsgård, Armin Mueller-Stahl.