It was a brave move by Darren Aronofsky to take one of Christianity’s pivotal stories and turn it into a soapbox for vegan and environmental concerns. It’s a film that’s sure to polarize audiences everywhere.
I went into the film knowing that it veered away from it’s Biblical roots pretty much straight away, despite the entire intro looking more cheesy than any Christian film could ever hope to be.
So was it fair of me to attempt to view (and review) a film obviously heavily influenced by a religious parable, from a purely entertainment standpoint? I think so, because at it’s heart, a trip to the movies is escapism, and very view people I would think, go to the movies to be bored to tears.
The main message of the film is easy to see; meat eaters are destroying the world and must be killed. The vegan shall inherit the earth. And fair enough, it’s easy to see the similarities between Aronofsky’s vision and our world. We’re not very good caretakers.
The problem with Noah isn’t the message, but the story that Aronofsky has woven around it. A classic example is one of the best scenes of the film, when the flood actually comes. It’s a wonderfully visual experience of massive destruction on a -dare I say – Biblical scale. But then Aronofsky zooms in and we see Noah holding onto a rope and fighting off would be invaders, whilst massive waves crash around and almost sink the ark. Why does the focus have to be on Superman’s father using his obviously superhuman skills? It just kills the scene.
And the film is populated with moments like this, where Aronofsky throws in some attempt at Hollywood action, like the Rock Transformers. These fallen angels have one chance to redeem themselves and do it in a failed attempt at channeling Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings. It turns what should have been a solid drama into a schizophrenic action film.
And then there’s the 138 minute run time. Cut out the Rock Transformers, cut out Ray Winstone and Anthony Hopkins, focus on the story and the film would have been a marvelous study of Noah and his attempt to bring balance back to the earth. But instead we have a film that is so long and tedious that you’ll be scratching your eyes out screaming “when will it end?”