Published on March 31st, 2014 | by Nathaniel0
Debating Whether to See Russell Crowe as Noah?
***Don’t worry, there’s no spoilers in here 🙂
Climactic sequences. Suspensul music-score. Thematic parallels questioning the integrity of humankind?
…Not exactly how you pictured a biblical story, right?
If you’re one of the people still clipped to that indecisive fence, questioning whether or not to watch Darren Aronofsky’s (Black Swan) reimagining of the biblical story starring Russell Crowe as Noah, just know that it’s not your grandmama’s Sunday school video. No sirreee, this here is a full production. We’re talking $125 million dollar budget + recognizable cast (Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins, and Nick Nolte) + over 150 individuals crewed in the art and visual arts department. And that’s not even the half of it… but I digress… To spend or not to spend that $5.50 (Somewhere in Nebraska) to $15.50 (Los Angeles); that is the question.
Well, over the last few months, controversy ballooned over what the film was going to be- “Would it be Hollywood cutting and snipping the ‘bible’ from the ‘bible story’?” “Would it be Hollywood’s inhumane attempt to capitalize on Christianity?” “Should Christians Bostonize and boycott?” These are just a few of the many recycled questions that the media kept on repeat in the weeks leading up to Noah’s release.
After watching the movie trailer on Youtube and seeing a slightly darker narrative than I remembered, I knew I had to see the movie for myself. And the verdict?
Well, I can’t tell you whether it was good or bad (only because I think films deserve a more introspective and refined analysis). But the truth is- yes, it’s dramatized. Yes, it might have been more historically accurate if the cast was somewhat middle-Eastern looking. Yes, the visual effects were awesome. No, Hermione no longer wears a cape or waves a wand. And no, Morgan Freeman did not crystallize from the clouds as God.
This movie borrowed components from the biblical story of Noah and retold it. And you know what, I couldn’t be happier. Why? Because this film takes what we see as words in Genesis and paints a picture of what the reality of the circumstance might be. The bible is not a PG fairytale; it’s an epic. Too often, we read, “Noah was a righteous man… He consistently followed God’s will and enjoyed a close relationship with Him.” And we stop there without giving a second thought to the equation. We see the words and think of them as static, not even considering that Noah was human, just like us. But to see him as human, flawed despite his righteousness and confused despite his obedience, allows us to understand the context of what he did and the strength that it might have taken.
In the film, we see Noah turn almost insane in his obedience to the Creator (they never refer to Him as God)- to the point where Noah questions if he can remove himself from the task and just operate under his convictions. He faces the challenge of seeing himself as worthy and righteous because in his eyes, he is no better than those who weren’t saved on the ark. We experience his frustration with himself, how his obedience polarizes his family, and even how he wrestles with the question of how and why a good God could permit what we perceive as loss and heartache to manifest.
Maybe it’s just me, but I’d like to believe that I’m not alone in saying, I’ve felt and had these same questions in my obedience to Big Pops. So sure, the film included aspects that were historically inaccurate, but step away from the hyper-critical mindset of our time and watch this film as an account of what it means when we say, “God, I choose to serve you.” I think you’ll be pleased.
Read Genesis chapters 6-9 for the real deal…
What did you think of Noah if you’ve seen it? And if you haven’t, are you planning to?