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Docs Decode, Dispute and Debunk the Da Vinci Code

11 May, 2005 By: Holly J. Wagner

Leonardo da Vinci's artistic and technical legacy has stretched for centuries beyond his death. With a movie of the Dan Brown novel The Da Vinci Code in production for next year (starring Tom Hanks as hero Robert Langdon), it looks like Brown's legacy will have a long life as well.

Documentaries that follow the same historical threads Brown identified in his book started to appear when it was on the best-seller list and show no sign of letting up.

Just out from The Disinformation Company is Exploring the Da Vinci Code. Among the latest titles seeking to solve the mystery of Jesus Christ and the nature of the Holy Grail, Exploring the Da Vinci Code features Henry Lincoln, author of Holy Blood, Holy Grail — the book even Brown credits as the basis of his fictional storyline — as narrator.

Lincoln helps viewers separate fact from fiction and dissect the symbolism carved into the church in Rennes-le-Chateau, France, that holds many of the story's secrets.

BFS Entertainment gets into the act May 17 with The Secrets of the Holy Grail. ($29.98).

Ventura and Highland Entertainment chime in June 7 with Unlocking Da Vinci's Code and Angels and Demons Revealed. Both titles focus on Brown's works of the same names, which have skyrocketed up the best-seller charts. But with Patrick Macnee (the original John Steed of “The Avengers”) narrating, expect a different take from Lincoln's (DVD $22.98).

Out June 28 is A&E's Beyond the Da Vinci Code (DVD $19.95).

The new entries add to a body of Da Vinci code docs, including Ardustry's Cracking the Da Vinci Code and The Disinformation Company's The Da Vinci Code Decoded.

For the most part, the titles follow the same path familiar to Brown's readers, but each focuses on different historical or scientific aspects of the research and, in the tradition of the best historical and most religious mysteries, none reach a certain conclusion. Instead, they leave us to ponder and to compare and contrast the various theories.

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