Sorry that I took so long for publishing my article of one of the best movie of the month. But here is the truth; this is not a wash brain movie you forget as soon you have watched it. On the contrary, this is the kind of movie that stays in your mind for a while and requires a certain time of reflexion.
A very actual theme…
Dealing with Men corruption and world protection and its ecosystem, this is a large public movie. With the just voted law improving animal status in France, it cannot be more relevant. Despite the risk to raise up such topics through Judeo-christriany history, the genre is put on the top of the trendiest, with the coming soon Exodus from Ridley Scott. The story has such a strong echo with the polemics nowadays, the relevancy of the movie is striking. Religion or not, we feel concerned, we are called out.
Between the giants of stone, His miracles and a reconciliation attempt between the creationist and the evolutionist theories, there is a true justification to put these ancestral writings on screens, not for making us believing but wondering. Intensive globalization and limitless exploitation of resources, this is the tragic end promised to a civilisation which has lost its points of reference and traditions. A society which has lost its humanist ideal now abandoned, alone with itself.
Topics that cannot be approved by all. Guilty for drawing a making guilty utopia, it could disturb some of us. It directly borrow tragical themes from our Judeo-Christian culture mixing up pride, guilt, redemption and hope. To manage such a chalenge, there are some original and ambitious scenes which are explaining theological part of the Old Testament and the director vision.
The tree which hides the forest…
Probably the very plus of the movie; the director chose to explore Noah doubts locked in his arch in a long second part. The truth is, when you are teased by Noah the movie, you are expecting the peplum with the ultimate and incredibly visual climax of the Flood. Actually, the scenario brings up a very dark in-closed-doors. It has the ambition to explore the question of the free will, the transmission of patrimony to the future generations and the responsibility of one for the common interest. You already know that the director, Darren Aronofsky, likes to put his main characters devastated by solitude, into impossible situations and painful introspections (Black Swan). How great is the situation of a man, alone on his arch since he condemned all men kind dumbed by the Creator, for asking all the most existential questions!
This is a smart choice that provides a lot of substance to the movie.
However, careful of the into-closed-doors mainstream style that could hide some lengths. Indeed, torturing Noah (and its audience) with dilemma could push you away from the story to get away from this torment. Not for all taste then!
Nonetheless, all this questions are associated with action scenes and shot comparable with the best peplums tearing up into the heart of the plot.
Russell at the top of his art…
Better to say it through; I am a great fan of Russell Crowe, and since my Latin courses in high school (Who wouldn’t fight for broadcasting Gladiator at the end of year to put some life in this « death » language class). Here, Russell delivers an incredible dimension to his performance, so relevant with so much talent. The protective with a watchful eye character turns slowly into the head of the family devastated by doubts, remorses until violence.
Certainly, great powers come with great responsibilities. But the great responsibilities Noah is conferred suggest huge powers way to significant and dangerous when there are handled by only one man. Wanton torture from destiny, blinding fatalism, or will to give a sense to one life, all leads are good to explore and so, thanks to the nice inter ration with the rest of the cast (even Emma Watson, with a special mention for Jennifer Connelly).
So does this movie carry a message? is it a moralizing movie?
Bringing up more questions than answers. The final twist during the last face to face dialogue between Noah and Ila (Emma Waston) leaves you a very subtil opening that gives all the credits to the movie. And there is no simplistic Manichaeism which would have been very uncalled-for.
A must seen movie even for the form as for the content.