Sunday, March 30, 2014

Movie Review ... Noah


Noah-posterCecille B DeMille would find much similarity with ‘Noah’.  Producer of many biblical epics from the 1950’s, his grand vision of holy stories raked in much box office dollars.  This divine cash-cow would never fade with Hollywood continually replicating his successful formula.  Directed by Darren Aronofsky, ‘Noah’ is his most spectacle-driven film to date.  Loaded with CGI, it maintains its myriad of religious imagery the likes of DeMille would have easily spotted.

Noah (Russell Crowe) is a carpenter suffering from strange dreams. Haunted by images of a cataclysmic flood, he sets out to protect his family.  They include his wife Naameh (Jennifer Connelly) adopted daughter Ila (Emma Watson) and son Ham (Logan Lerman).  Building an ark which can withstand any catastrophe, Noah refuses to be scared of other’s ridicule as disaster looms.

‘Noah’ is a strange concoction of styles.  Filled with the expected religious sermonising, it copies much from the ‘Lord of the Rings’, ‘Game of Thrones’ formula.  It has sword fights, battle sequences and even supernatural monsters.  These seem very out of place for such a famed tale.  Had it been filmed in a more believable style ‘Noah’ would have worked better.  The added elements conspire to muddy the often glacially paced narrative with minimal characterisation.

Crowe and his co-stars gamely attempt to rise above these set-backs.  Unfortunately their performances become swamped by the excessive and occasionally badly realised CGI.  Aronovsky seems to lose interest with his lack-lustre direction drawing little emotion or depth.  The amazing cinematography is a plus with its mix of gritty climes and searing beauty going some way in papering over the script’s many cracks. 

Those hoping for a truer representation of the Noah’s Ark tale will probably be disappointed.  ‘Noah’ fails to fire with its infrequent signs of life doing little to capture the grandiose atmosphere of DeMille’s fabled works.


Movie Review Rating out of 10:  4

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

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