Sunday, March 30, 2014

A story, A moive, An outrage The New 52 #14

So it seems like every person with a pulpit has an opinion on this Noah movie. So for what its worth here are my 2 cents. I'm really hoping that this is a little more of a fair and unbiased "review" of the movie. Let me being with this. I'm a fan of Aronofsky. I first saw Pi when I was in high school and I was hooked. I think The Wrestler is an amazing piece of story telling about the ungraceful aging of athletes and what it means to lose ones identity. I've been waiting for this movie since I first heard about it's concept, I believe some time around The Passion of the Christ.  Also I believe the story of Noah is a historical account of judgment, mercy, and grace. A story I love yet one that I never do justice to because its ingrained in my brain as a brightly colored children's book.

Now on to the movie.
I really like Aronofsky's work as a story teller and artist but this movie simple wasn't his best. The movie relied heavily on some real lame cg. I mean it seriously looked like it should have been on Syfy. That's right a multi-million dollar Hollywood blockbuster with the same kind of special effects as Sharknado. While the story had some really interesting meta-arcs it is ultimately held back by some predictable, contrived and clichéd story tropes. (The crazy-magical old man, the over protective mother, the fallen faithful, wickedness man abusing nature.)

Oh yeah it wasn't really that accurate and lets face it no one is surprised by this. Hollywood can't even retell a classic story, looking at you Peter Jackson and everyone involved with X-men Origins: Wolverine (I promise that is the last time I'm going to acknowledge that movie exist), without adding and subtracting from it. What is funny is the weird things they went out of their way to add, magical rocks that  burst into flame; a piece of fruit that looked like a beating heart, and the simple details they left out or changed. FYI props for including the waters from within the earth. It wasn't just rain ya'll. I mean seriously Noah ate meat and sacrificed animals. If they could have just presented this as an epic myth and distanced themselves from the name Noah it would have a completely different reception but then again controversy creates cash.

With all that said there are some things that I really appreciated from the filmmakers. I believe that there were  also some elements we as Christians can use to help us reclaim the truth of the story from the pastel walls of the nursery room. I like how they referred to God as "the Creator" considering that this was the biggest way God had revealed himself in the Genesis account thus far. Also big kudos to them for really holding on to the whole image of God stuff especially in the face of evolutional creation. I like how the ark was a big square box. I loved how they camped out on the idea that all men, even Noah, were wicked which is something that we need to reclaim from misunderstanding. In fact I really like the character of Noah a lot. I mean who single mindedly followed the creator even when it would have been easier not to and struggled heavily with the consequences. PTSD anyone? I like how they emphasized that the flood was a punishment of wicked man which is often something we lose as we remember Sunday school story time. The other  two big things I'd like to see reclaimed from the story besides the previously mentioned wickedness of all is that 1) the flood was an amazingly horrifically violent event; the amount of life lost is simply unimaginable of course Noah was messed up, everyone outside of his lineage was dead. 2) That sin has a wide effect. All though 2 of each animal were preserved to carry on countless were killed. People were killed regardless of an "age of innocence or accountability" or the mental capacities to understand wrong doing. Our sin effects our neighbors and our children we forget that often.

God was Just in wiping it all out, he was merciful by allowing a remnant, and he was gracious because he picked an unworthy man to build a box.

ps. they really could have used a giraffe.

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