The less you know about how they are able to deduce this criminal mastermind, the better you are. For the trap seems to be cribbed from the old Batman television series, where our hero was able to foil the Riddler by cobbling together the vaguest of clues. Additionally, we really have no feel for the characters whose lives are threatened, having never really knowing them, which is not always essential, but certainly would have helped draw the audience into this race for time.
Of course, this most likely would have meant a longer running time, and of all the things lacking about Angels & Demons, brevity is certainly not one of them.
I realize that the global box office of Code made this film inevitable, but of all the hundreds of millions of viewers around the globe, I have yet to talk to someone passionate enough about the first to crave another. The most enthusiastic response was, "Well, I think they can do a better job with the next one."
Perhaps the next installment the producers could have Popes parachute into a courtyard of Ninja Bishops and all face off against an angry army of zombie priests.
I would even allow Hanks to regrow his mullet back for that one.