A Little Background
Last night I went see the much hyped movie Noah. I wasn’t sure what to expect. All I had seen were previews that ended with a disclaimer that both worried me and gave me a bit of reassurance. The disclaimer stated that they had taken some liberties with the story but had attempted to stay true to the heart of the story. I knew that this could go one of two ways. Either the story would be close to the Biblical narrative, which would have been difficult to do based on how little detail is given in Genesis on Noah, or the movie would have made up a story in order to fill in for the silence of the Genesis narrative.
After watching the movie in its entirety, I came to the conclusion that the movie would have been better entitled “The Books of Enoch”. Much of the story that is told within Noah comes from the books of Enoch, and this is worth stating because there are so many references to “the watchers”, which are fallen angels, within the movie. It is also worth mentioning that the books of Enoch are not held as helpful or factual by the majority of Christianity, with the exception of two groups.
Within Noah we see a world that is sinful and far from God, humanity is more concerned about power and greed than serving “The Creator”. They have, with the unwitting help of the watchers, stripped the planet nearly bare. It is now a wasteland that can barely sustain life and humanity is killing one another for the last remaining resources. Noah receives a vision from God showing Noah that He will destroy the earth. Noah is unsure of what this means, so he and his family make the long journey to see his grandfather Methuselah. Methuselah, like a shaman, gives Noah a drink that gives him a drug induced vision. This vision confirms what Noah thought, God is going to destroy the earth and he is going to do it with water and not fire. With the help of the watchmen, and a magical spring of water that produces a forest for Noah to build his ark, he sets out on the tasking of building a boat to save all the animals from the coming flood.
As Noah builds the ark, humanity gathers a few miles away and plans a take over of the boat. However I didn’t feel too bad for them when the flood came, because they had plenty of time to cut down some trees and build a boat for themselves, but simply didn’t. Instead they plot and plan on how to take Noah’s boat from him. When the rain does start, and humanity sees its impending doom, they begin their assault on Noah’s ark. The watchmen, or rock people as I call them, protect the ark until God speeds the flooding process up with water geysers from the ground. Also, in a last minute change of heart, God decides to allow the watchers/fallen angels to return to heaven as a reward for helping Noah in his god given quest.
As the flood comes and Noah is content to let everyone die, his family asks him to save some of the people outside of the ark. Noah refuses, because he is set on the destruction of humanity. This only progresses further when Noah comes to the conclusion that God wants all of humanity to end. Noah’s family will bear no children and his sons will be the last people to ever live on the earth, burying each other in turn, down to the last son. Needless to say they don’t take it this news well. His family hates him, conflict erupts, and he almost kills a few of them. When it’s all said and done, and the boat lands, Noah gets out of his mind drunk in a cave down by the sea while his family handles his responsibilities of starting anew. Eventually he comes around and decides maybe humanity should be given another chance, after his daughter in law convinces him that “The Creator” must have left humanities fate up to Noah.
In The End
If you want to see a story about a man of faith going against the evil of the world, lead only by his faith in God, you would be better off watching a movie like Book of Eli rather than Noah. It’s better written, better acted, and focuses more on the faith of one man than Noah ever even tried to. Noah is a sad and sorry mix of the Lord Of The Rings, The Road, and The Shining but doesn’t pull off any combination of them well. The story is far from Biblical, not only in reference to Noah as a man, but also in reference to God. Even if you try to get away with calling that God “The Creator”, the God presented in Noah isn’t presented as loving, merciful, or even just. He is presented rather as silent, detached, and uncaring.
So should you see it? Probably not. Unless of course you are looking for a movie to make fun of for the 2 hours you will have to endure it.