About half way through the Noah movie, I decided to imagine that the story occurred on another planet, and thus did not have anything to do with the biblical tale told in the Bible. After I accepted this truth I was able to watch the movie and genuinely enjoy it, without thinking of how it might have differed from the actual events.
Noah is portrayed a man who will do anything to obey the will of God, who in the film is referred to as the Creator. The length to which Noah will go to follow the Creator’s will may be shocking to some, as killing an endless number of people through various violent means is not something usually attributed to the character. Noah felt more like the typical Hollywood anti-hero, dark and brooding, as opposed to the gentle and wise image I had from the biblical tale. The role of the Creator is also interesting, as God never once speaks to any of the characters, yet his existence is firmly believed by all.
When it comes down to it, there actually were not that many deviations from the biblical tale when all is said and done. The fact of the matter is there is not much story to begin with, as the Noah story in the Bible is surprising light on details. During the whole story Noah does not even speak once, and the name of his wife and sons wives are not mentioned. This led the director, Darren Aronofsky, to embellish the story in order to show the human emotion necessary for a movie. While some might feel that he portrayed Noah in an unfavorable light, the way the director envisioned a pre-flood world was actually quite interesting and imaginative.
However, this does not mean that everything was a bed of roses. One of the main issues I had with the film was the pacing. The viewer was taken on a roller coaster of emotions throughout the film, and when the Flood actually did come two-thirds into the movie, it felt like just another crazy event as opposed to the main climax. I will admit that for the first half of the movie I felt almost like the whole thing was on drugs, as some moments were completely surreal. Also there were odd moments of bad CGI, which could remind you that most of the action is taking place on a green screen.
Some moments brought a new sense of reality to the story. The director did a great job of making the viewer realize just how horrible this disaster actually was. An extremely powerful scene involved Noah and his family sitting in the Ark and listening to the screams of those outsides as they sunk to their watery graves. There was also another scene of the whole Earth covered in storm clouds. These moments were highlights of the film for me, and made me think of the biblical story with a new sense of admiration and consideration of the horror and destruction. I would like to give a shout out to the amazing Anthony Hopkins, who expertly depicts Noah’s grandfather Methuselah. The cast overall is excellent, and the performances bring the emotional weight needed to a story of this magnitude.
All in all, I would say that Noah is a good movie, and one that any action fan should check out. The viewer should bear in mind that this portrayal of the story does not always correspond with the biblical tale, yet that is not inherently a bad thing. Some of the creative liberties taken are quite interesting, as none of us really know what the world was like in those times. The story is “based on facts”, but not always factual. If you want to see the story of Noah told in an imaginative and creative way, then I would encourage you to give the movie a chance.