The New York Times called Noah the “modernist rendering of the biblical flood.” Reviews are mixed (I love reading reviews and my personal favorite is “equal parts ridiculous and magnificent”) and some religious groups have their panties in a twist not so much over the cinematic liberties, but rather the sheer gall of including an environmental message and the fact the word “God” isn’t used in the film.
I did find it a little hard to suspend disbelief in the face of such impressive metallurgy just 10 generations from Adam. Also, the whole pregnancy test thing threw me. Noah’s wife is super alchemist who can diagnose pregnancy by pouring back wash from a cup over a leaf mixed with some kind of magical substance that might be gold (but it also seems to work as gunpowder, so that bit had me confused). Anyway, if the leaf turns into a ray of light you’re pregnant. No squinting for a blue line in the bronze age! I totally get they couldn’t sacrifice one of the two rabbits on board, but have the women tie reeds around their necks or something a little more bonze age than leaving viewers with the idea that there is enough hCG in spittle to transmutate a leaf.
I got past all the bizarre plot points (there are a lot, Aronofsky’s head must be a wild place) until they all hopped on the boat. There are 6 of them: Noah, his wife, his son Shem, Shem’s girlfriend, and Noah’s other two sons, Ham and Japheth. Yes, 4 men and 2 women are going to populate the world. This lack of a woman for Ham is a source of major friction throughout the movie and the poison comes to a head on the ark.
But just when you thought the reproductive math was creepy, it gets worse. Ila delivers twin girls during the 10 months or so they are at sea. Noah in a fit of madness or perhaps not understanding the Creator’s intent (open to interpretation) believes humanity should be wiped out so he must murder the two babies to end the lineage of man. No more women, no more babies. Noah’s wife tries to convince him otherwise, saying the Creator has provided what they “needed,” specifically two baby girls will marry their uncles and mankind will continue.
Yes, all the boys will have wives, it’s just two of the couples will be very closely related. And this is portrayed as the reasonable solution to sway a man from his madness.
Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.
I’m no biblical scholar, but there is nothing in the source material about Noah’s sons procreating with their nieces. I read several versions. In fact, in Genesis Noah’s sons had wives on the ark.
I get that family conflict was needed, but are ways to make a middle son hate his father and place every life at risk and not make incest part of the denouement especially if you’re imaginative enough to create angels who come to earth to help mankind only to be trapped in rock and lava and devise mythical pregnancy tests. Incest is about as ugly as it gets and it takes the movie from a hot crazy mess to creepy.
It’s amazing to me that Paramount can be paranoid about what religious groups will think of the film, but show no concern about the implication of incest.
And it’s sad that all the people bitching about the so called anti-Christian agenda of the movie are fixated on Aranofsky’s atheism, his referencing a Creator instead of God, and the environmentalism but incest, meh, no worries.