It doesn’t take long to feel overwhelmed by all of the talk about a semi-Christian movie like Noah. This one is especially ripe for controversy with an atheist director. Like my friend Jason argues, I have no issue with the film from a Christian point of view. Is it Biblically accurate? Mostly. But people watch this to be entertained, not to learn inspired theology. If you’re looking for theology read the Bible. I disliked the movie Noah because of the movie itself, not any connection or lack thereof to the Bible.
Here are five reasons why (without spoilers):
- I empathized with the wrong characters. Mainly, all of Noah’s family but him. Darren Aronofsky attempted to create a troubled protagonist following the will of God despite the sacrifices. He ended up creating a one-sided hero that you struggle to root for. I officially turned against him after his middle son turns against him in the story (I’m being intentionally ambiguous to avoid spoilers).
- I’m fine with an unrealistic world as long as it’s done well. This wasn’t. I’m specifically referring to the “rock people/Nephilim/fallen angels/Watchers” that play a somewhat major role in the film. I actually thought this was a clever addition to the story. They bring to mind the tree people from Lord of the Rings. However, these guys just didn’t deliver up to the potential they had. They looked awful, the special effects were terrible, and their voices lacked power. Throughout most of the film they are feeble old men until it starts raining. Then they become superheroes.
- It was boring. I’m not the movie snob type person that demands to be entertained constantly. However, this movie dragged on. After they get in the ark you find yourself waiting for the movie to end. Which it doesn’t, at least not for awhile. Once it does end, you are left with that strange feeling of sticking around a little too long at a party after the majority of people have already left.
- God is virtually nonexistent. This isn’t an issue with staying true to the Biblical account of the story, rather that the story of Noah without a strong presence of God just seems strange. The characters never refer to God as anything but “The Creator” and He’s almost nonexistent. Which is weird for a movie with a bunch of supernatural events. They attribute the supernatural parts to God, they just don’t do much with Him.
- The opening credits are stylistically odd. I don’t know how to explain this one well other than they didn’t fit the movie. I literally had a negative reaction to the movie in the first sixty seconds of it. It didn’t feel consistent to the movie and set a tone of confusion/ambiguity.
I wanted to enjoy this movie for a number of reasons, (my friend Craig Gross‘ son is in it) but the movie itself wasn’t good. It does cause you to use your imagination to fill in the story, but more so because you try to fix the weirdness of the movie you’re watching. I’m not offended by Noah, just a little disappointed.