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Customer Review

650 of 849 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Rare Type of Movie, March 31, 2014
This review is from: Noah (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD) (Blu-ray)
I saw Noah a week ago at my local theater, and am just now able to write a level headed review about it. See, Noah is that type of movie that you either absolutely love, or downright hate. Its the kind of movie that makes people fiercely defensive of their opinions, that sparks widespread controversy. This is rare, as movies nowadays seem to be pretty tailored to their target audience. Most of the controversy is centered around whether or not the film is biblical. As a Christian who has read the bible, I feel the need to point out that the bible is very vague concerning the story of Noah. God has the only speaking part, and the feelings and experiences of Noah and his family are not shared with us. If the film ONLY included the text as it was written, it would be about half an hour, and very impersonal. Darren Aronofsky adds additional material because if he didn't, there wouldn't be a film. There wouldn't even be any characters, other then names. Now, a lot of the controversy concerns what he added, mainly the bit about the fallen angels. People seem very confused about this, shortsightedly likening them to "Rock Transformers". The Nephilim, as they are called, are mentioned in the Bible, as well as in the Book of Enoch (Enoch was the great grandfather of Noah), which is a Jewish telling of the flood that is separate from the one in the Bible. They are also referred to in the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is an ancient historical and mythological text containing the story of the flood, also separate from the bible. If one considers for a moment that Darren Aronofksy came from a Jewish background, its easy to see where he would have gotten some of his content. Other characters from the Bible are featured, such as Tubal Cain (the leader of the 'wicked' humans in the film), as well as Methuselah, even though they aren't mentioned in the biblical story of the flood. If one considers that all of these people lived at the same time however, its not much of a stretch. You can have whatever opinion about the film that you want, I just thought it might be interesting for those of you who are confused as to what the Nephilim are, or who the "Yoda character" is. Now, considering the vagueness of the bible on the event of the flood, it is only reasonable that Darren Aronofsky would have to fill in some blanks, and he does take creative license with it. Of course a lot of it isn't in the bible, but it does not contradict or disrespect what is already there. I think it should be celebrated that the bible is so narratively complex, its mysteries so compelling, that a self professed Atheist would be moved to try and tell one of its stories. There is a lot of material in that book for compelling films, whether you believe it to be fact or fantasy.

Of course, a lot of people will disagree with me, both on my opinions of the film and its source material. That is fine, I am just tired of reading negative and uneducated articles and reviews by people who refer to the Nephilim as "rock transformers", even by people who have admitted to not even seeing the film! Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and some people will not like the liberties taken by the director. Its understandable. But as far as I am concerned, Noah is a beautiful, grim, powerfully compelling epic about the human capacity for wickedness and immorality, as well as love and mercy. The cinematography, art design, special effects, and music are uniformly brilliant. Russell Crowe brings a humanity and chilling focus to the character of Noah in one of his best performances, with Jennifer Connelly, Emma Watson, Ray Winstone, and Logan Lerman all turning in powerfully brazen work as well. The film is tense, brutal, spectacular, smart, emotionally involving and thought provoking. Love if or hate it, you cannot deny the importance and power of anything that has inspired so much debate and controversy. As entertainment, I loved it, as a story with compelling characters and themes, I loved it. If you enjoyed Braveheart or Lord of the Rings, and are willing to see Noah as a work of film rather than an advertisement for the Christian church, I think you will enjoy it too. And if you don't, that's okay. But at least see it and decide for yourself.
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Comments

Tracked by 9 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 95 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 14, 2014 9:28:37 PM PDT
R. Taylor says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Apr 15, 2014 8:04:56 AM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Jul 7, 2014 3:03:32 PM PDT
Gabyjelly says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jul 7, 2014 3:03:49 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 7, 2014 3:06:13 PM PDT
Gabyjelly says:
Great input Joseph thanks

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2014 3:58:26 PM PDT
Thank you!

Posted on Jul 15, 2014 8:25:10 AM PDT
The "Rock Transformers" of which you speak apparently had you missing the entire point of these creatures.

They weren't the Nephilim. They were the Watchers, and I believe the film even opens to generally/vaguely explain this fact. If you watched the movie, that should have been one of the first things you would have keyed in on (especially since Genesis only covers one verse of the "sons of God").

In reality, the Watchers are fully described in the Apocrypha's Books of Enoch. They were "fallen" angels in the sense that they were cast down to the Earth due to their involvement with humanity since after the garden of Eden. Of course, what the director interprets beyond that point is his interpretation.

Other than that, I also agreed this was a very well-done, intense movie that essentially blows away most preconceived ideas of Noah's humanity.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 15, 2014 9:16:35 PM PDT
Ah, good catch. I had forgotten that the Nephilim were the offspring, not the angels themselves. Thank you for saying something. I was so frustrated with all the asinine comments about the "rock transformers" that I got ahead of myself a little bit trying to tie it in with the bible. I am happy to hear you liked the movie, its nice to hear something positive on it for once.

Posted on Jul 16, 2014 5:40:31 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 21, 2014 3:04:47 PM PDT
e says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jul 16, 2014 5:52:02 AM PDT
@Joseph Elliott

No problem.

If I may be perfectly blunt, while I love the Church, there are many within it that simply don't know how to properly handle differing views.

So many are stuck on the idea that if anyone -- regardless of their spiritual background -- chooses to create a movie that is in any way based on the Bible, then that movie must be an exact replica of literally what the Bible says, otherwise "they" (usually defined as anyone who then watches the movie who may have a differing viewpoint of the Bible than "we", usually defined as whomever's saying this statement :) ) won't actually get the Bible, as if a movie's sole purpose is anything other than art.

And, of course, art is always open to interpretation. I think you see where I'm going with this.

Ultimately, we are demonstrating exactly what I think was the whole point of Noah (the movie) being created -- to have a discussion about different viewpoints.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 16, 2014 5:57:29 AM PDT
@e

I would definitely agree with your points as well. It would appear that's what the movie gets when it has a non-Christian (I think perhaps self-proclaimed atheist?) as its director; I would not expect such a person to understand Jesus' sacrifice (forward-looking from Noah's perspective) for sin.

As far as folks who don't read the scriptures on a daily basis, I had ran across a number of Twitter links via BibleGateway (but have since misplaced them) where searches for Genesis and related verses were up over 300%. Therefore, the movie was definitely having an impact and people were, in fact, going to the Bible, per se, to look up the story as opposed to merely relying upon a movie.

I don't know -- maybe I give humanity more faith that they will go look something up directly instead of relying solely upon a movie to convey truth.
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