Well, it seems like Ron Howard and Co. learned a thing or two from The Da Vinci Code. First off, Tom Hank's hair is so much better. Thank god. And while I love Audrey Tautou, Ayelet Zurer was a better fit as Robert Langdon's yes-woman. The movie is still bogged down by lots of exposition but that's impossible to avoid in a book/movie this.
Was Angels & Demons a better book than Da Vinci Code? Probably not, since the art slant and the whole Mary as the Grail thing seemed to capture everyone's imagination better, however, the Angels & Demons movie is definitely an upgrade. The pacing was faster, stupid lines were generally avoided, and everyone's expectations had come down enough to realize that a movie adaptation could only take Dan Brown's words so far.
The real tragedy here is that I have the movie's anagrams tattooed on my back. Not because of any affiliation or extreme love for the book, but for entirely different reasons. So now people will be like "wait, isn't that from the movie?" Oh well, you live with it I guess.