noah-movie-review-7

Darren Aronofsky‘s Noah is finally opening in theaters. The film’s based on one of the most popular and vital figures in the Bible. Aronofsky attempts to show the character as a flawed man struggling with his calling. It’s a commendable effort, but somewhere along the line, Noah goes from unlikely hero to possible villain.

The Players:

  • Director: Darren Aronofsky
  • Writers: Darren Aronofsky and Ari Handel
  • Starring: Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Ray Winstone, Anthony Hopkins, Emma Watson, Logan Lerman, Douglas Booth, Nick Nolte, Mark Margolis
  • Music: Clint Mansell
  • Cinematography: Matthew Libatique

Plot:

Noah (Russell Crowe) is the last descendant of Seth, the son of Adam and Eve. He’s plagued with visions of destruction, and soon understands the Creator’s (that’s what they call God in this movie) plan for the world. With the help of his family and supernatural creatures called The Watchers, Noah begins building an ark. It will be large enough to house two of every animal and insect on Earth. Word of a death-by-water prophecy spreads and Tubal-cain (a king and descendent of Cain) decides he’ll take Noah’s ark by force.

The Good:

  • Ham/Logan Lerman: Oddly enough, Ham was the only character who behaved like a norman human being. He acknowledged Noah’s erratic behavior and called him out on it. He didn’t just take his word as law. In a story where everyone except Noah suffers real consequences, it was great to have Ham stand his ground.

The So So:

  • Noah Himself: Noah isn’t a likable person. In most Biblical films, writers have a habit of putting the main characters on a pedestal. They’re semi-perfect, which keeps them from being relatable. But there’s a fine line between being humanized and demonized. Noah and his family are set apart by the Creator to survive the Great Flood, yet Noah exhibits some truly disturbing behavior throughout the film. At times, he’s arrogant and so blinded by his own ideals that he doesn’t see the fault in his ways. It’s hard to root for or understand why a man like that would be chosen to re-establish humanity.
  • The Introduction: The film’s opening scene is strange to say the least. It features flashes of images taken from Genesis, which explore creation, Adam, Eve and the death of Abel at the hands of Cain. The images are paired with over-the-top music the comes across as comedic, not dramatic. It also sets the stage for the look of the film, which at moments resembles a children’s pop-up book.
  • The Music: At times, the music can be overpowering. So much so, that you can’t hear anything over it. Noah has a beautiful score but it was too loud and very intrusive.

The Bad:

  • The Watchers: These are fallen angels that have been exiled by the Creator. As a punishment for attempting to help man, they’re cursed with giant rock bodies. Their character design takes you out of the story and makes you feel like you’re watching another film. Is this Noah or is it Clash of the Titans?

Overall:

I went into Noah with an open heart and mind, but I still didn’t enjoy it. Noah’s an unsympathetic character that constantly makes you doubt his true motives. His entire family (especially the women), pacify his behavior, which in some instances borders on despicable. I have to give Aronofsky credit for taking this story in a new and polarizing direction. It’s definitely not what many of us are accustomed to. That may be a turnoff for some, while being a draw for others.

The Rating: 5/10

Noah opens in theaters March 28.

Photo Gallery:

Trailer:

Will you be watching Noah this weekend?