Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Great Things Come in Twos

I started reading this novel called The Templar Legacy, by some guy named Steve Berry. Less than a chapter into it, I began experiencing severe deja vu...mainly because the book has the exact same plot as The Da Vinci Code! And it came out two years after it. Check it out, here is the jacket text of The Da Vinci Code:

"While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon
receives an urgent late-night phone call...As Langdon and a gifted
French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, sort through the bizarre riddles,
they are stunned to discover a trail of clues hidden in the works of
Da Vinci...In a frantic race through Paris and beyond, Langdon and
Neveu find themselves matching wits with a faceless powerbroker
who appears to anticipate their every move. Unless they can decpiher
the labyrinthine puzzle, the Priory's secret -and an explosive ancient
truth- will be lost forever."

Now, here is the jacket text of The Templar Legacy:

"Onetime U.S. operative Cotton Malone teams up with his former
supervisor, Stephanie Nelle, to find the legendary cache of wealth
and forbidden knowledge thought to have been lost forever when
the Knights Templar were exterminated in the fourteenth century.
Nelle is armed with vital clues to a series of centuries-old puzzles
scattered across Europe, but also in pursuit of the historic prize is a
shadowy zealot with an army of assassins at his command. At the
end of the trail lies a discovery that could rock the civilized world-
and, in the wrong hands, bring it to its knees."

Interesting...I'm really eager to finish this book now, so I can see if the rest of the story is as original as it sounds.
But while I'm on the subject, I got thinking about what Seth Rogan's character says in Knocked Up, about two similar kinds of movies that come out around the same time, and one always seems to do better than the other. Here are some dynamic duos I thought of that bear eery similarities:

A Bug's Life / Antz
A hard-working ant drone tries to protect his beloved colony from danger.

Armaggedon / Deep Impact
An enormous asteroid threatens to collide with earth and cause lots of death & pain and stuff.

Finding Nemo / Shark Tale
Colourful fish characters befriend vegetarian sharks.

Troy / King Arthur
The epic battles of a historical war shown in vivid, gory detail...just, you know, with hunks.

Madagascar / The Wild
A lion and some other exotic animals escape from the Central Park zoo in order to find their way back home to Africa.

The Prestige / The Illusionist
Feuding magicians struggle to keep their secrets from being revealed.

Inkheart / Nim's Island / The Spiderwick Chronicles / Bridge to Terabithia
A beloved children's fantasy adapted into a movie that nobody has any interest in seeing, because it blows.

Small Soldiers / Transformers
Okay, so they didn't come out at the same time. There were years between them. But still, exact same plot: a teenage guy buys a machine, only to quickly discover that the machine has a robotic mind of its own. He learns that there are two different teams of machines: the colourful good guys, with peaceful personalities; and the militaristic bad guys, who are constantly trying to make war. Devoting all of his help to the good machines, the teenage guy teams up with the hot girl he has a crush on and battles against the evil machines until victory is achieved.
Hell, the dad in both movies is played by the same actor. Look it up.

Anyway, I've done enough ranting for one night. So remember, please don't make illegal copies of DVDs: those Hollywood mega-zillionaires really need the money.

"Da Vinci Code fans might experience a bit of deja vu, but The Templar Legacy is more thrilling."
-RedEye Chicago

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