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So Noah huh?

"Go Russ"

“Go Russ”

An ancient story about 200 words long, that describes eight Bronze-Age humans who are all over 500 years old, building a boat the size of a football stadium with only felled trees and pitch. That might be acceptable as an item of faith, but when you try and visualise that it IS going to fall apart (as will the gopher wood water-craft).  Yet Darren Aronofsky is trying to do just that, bringing the epic tale of Noah to the big screen with its usual Hollywood spectacle. Naturally we don’t expect realism from a disaster movie, which this is, but apparently the movie is also under fire from Christians because it adds to the Biblical narrative. This seems a given as a screen-play translates to 1 page per minute of screen-time, and a literal interpretation using just the biblical text would be a movie about a minute-long. Of course you could pad out the story with semi-realistic construction times, but 120 minutes of carpentry would not make for a particularly enthralling movie, even for fans of renovation shows.

But Nephilim, we get Nephilim. You know the bad guys from the bible that may be a) half-angel b) oversized men from Canna or c) dead Philistine warriors. I’m assuming we are going for interpretation a) or b) on this one, as already dead guys make as boring a movie as the afore mentioned carpentry documentation. This movie is starting to sound like a cross between and episode of Supernatural and The Block. Lets not get involved with the whole, “how do you fit that many animals on one structurally unsound boat, with enough food to last them, and without them eating each other” question. You could go the Ray Comfort ‘types’ of animals, but of course that assumes you have no understanding of basic biology, taxonomy, or genetics. Lets not get into the accuracies of a boiled down version of the Gilgamesh story, after its been through centuries of reinterpretation and languages changes, instead lets talk Hollywood. Apparently “Paramount takes liberties with ‘Noah’ that they would never take with ‘Harry Potter,'”, probably because the Harry Potter world is far more believable. It is however, a fair comparison. Both worlds rely heavily on fantastic elements that defy belief, its just that J.K. Rowling is a little better with her consistency in maintaining the rules of her ‘world’.

Russell “Are You Not Entertained?” Crowe lends his carpentry skills to this interesting cast in a movie about god murdering all his children. We can assume that there will be the obligatory Hollywood fight scenes where Noah goes all John McClane on a bunch of angel spawn, who are understandably not wanting to be drowned just because their daddy had wings. Throw in a bit of Steve Irwin, as the 500 year old characters crash-tackle unwilling animals for their floating zoo, and many scenes with characters wielding a pooper-scooper to prevent the ark from overflowing with faecal build-up.  Then finish on a shipwrecked family landing on infertile land (Sea water would do a pretty good job of salting the earth), where the patriarch then gets blotto and passes out naked, only to then curse one of his children for putting a blanket over him while he slept. All-in-all a touching children’s story.

Egypt+flood

On the bright side American Christian extremists are likely to boycott the movie for “utter lack of reverence” for the source material, while Islamic interests are equally annoyed by the on-screen portrayal of a prophet. There are however a few people who ‘get it’, which is to say they understand that a Movie is a very different thing to a few biblical verses, no matter how you interpret those verses. Me, I’m looking forward to an unbelievable story, with an all-star cast, unrealistic action scenes,  all headed up by an overacting ham, because THAT is what Hollywood is best at.

EDIT: Oh, seems this isn’t based on the Biblical account of Noah, but the older Gnostic version (see http://drbrianmattson.com/journal/2014/3/31/sympathy-for-the-devil)

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