Noah film - good or bad?

Discussion in 'Movies' started by benjamin1991, Nov 18, 2013.

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  1. benjamin1991

    benjamin1991 Puritan Board Freshman

    So there's a film called Noah being released based on the very same Bible story.

    My initial response to this was downright apathy combined with a realisation that this was going to cause much internet debate when it was released.

    Further thinking has inclined me against the whole idea of a secular company making a film based on the Bible. How can it not be "adding or subtracting" to Scripture? And how can it honour God when it portrays the story as myth rather than truth?

    Talking it over with friends revealed a lot of disagreement with this position.

    My question is: am I being too critical? Is there a space for films based on the Bible (that aren't at the same time, biblical in truth)? Can I enjoy it for its entertainment value and separate that out from my own personal views? Can I enjoy it as a story that just happens to be called Noah and is loosely based on the Bible? Or is it right to judge it with a very high standard.

    Wisdom in this matter would be appreciated.
  2. SeanPatrickCornell

    SeanPatrickCornell Puritan Board Freshman

    I am of the mind that it's far better to err on the side of caution in matters such as these.

    I won't be seeing it, and in my opinion I think this film is sinful because it actually misrepresents the Word of God, as in the LITERALLY utterances of God.

    Early reports say that God is mad to man for "wrecking the Earth", ie, not being environmentally friendly.
  3. Leslie

    Leslie Puritan Board Junior

    I have a set of films on the patriarchs plus Moses, Samson and David, well done, that I use to teach my girls English. They teach good values, are faithful to the scriptures. But I think the company that made them is Christian.
  4. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    God gave us in His word all we need to know about Noah and the flood. To add to Scripture deserves what? To take away from Scripture deserves what? WHat do the Scriptures say?
  5. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    Someone sent me the trailer the other day and I was watching the trailer with two of my kids looking on. My daughter, 9, said: "It's probably something different than what the Bible teaches." :)
  6. Timobe

    Timobe Puritan Board Freshman

    But i cannot wondering "is that so bad and against the scripture ?" Actually, i just look very quickly the video and saw that the specials effects were quite well done. In a period where people just think the Bible (if they know exactly what is the Bible ! Because you would be surprised to hear that some people don't in Europe) is a old and useless book that tell boring stories, is this sort of movies not good to catch the interest of the people ?

    I'm writing that to "relaunch" the discussion because i think too that that sort of movie tend to "mythologize" the Bible and are not good enough on the message that God wanted to transmit through his Word and especially the story of Noah.
  7. John Lanier

    John Lanier Puritan Board Junior

    Two quotes from the director of the film should answer your question.

    Any time a film such is this is made, extrabiblical occurrences must be added because the Biblical account is not a moment by moment story such as a movie would be. That is a dangerous thing. I also read that Noah has a daughter in the film.

    In other words...BAD! :down:
  8. Frosty

    Frosty Puritan Board Sophomore

  9. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    It catches the interest of ignorant Christians and others to a false word. What you win them with is what you win them to.
  10. littlepeople

    littlepeople Puritan Board Freshman

    I learn about God from his word, and I go to movies for entertainment. Unless there are atrocious second commandment violations, I will be seeing it eagerly. Like most historically based films, I'm sure this one will be full of errors. All of history is God's history, not just the bits recorded in the Bible, so I wouldn't think of a film about the flood any differently than I would a film about the civil war. Every sermon I've ever heard on the flood "imagines" all kinds of details not found in the text, so it's hardly fair to criticize a secular film for doing the same. I'm actually pretty fond of Russel Crowe films, so I'm looking forward to it.
  11. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I think we can anticipate that the film will take liberities with the Scripture account and replace much of the biblical ethic with with ethics that have a broader appeal. Nearly all mass market films based on biblical stories have done this. The question is where specifically this one will go wrong. The recent full-length trailer made it appear that the film in some way acknowledges the idea that sin deserves punishment, which actually sounds more biblically faithful than many children's story books about Noah.

    I'll probably see it, expecting to be annoyed, if for no other reason than so I can intelligently interact with others who see it.
  12. littlepeople

    littlepeople Puritan Board Freshman

    I hope during the credits, they play the song about Noah making his arky arky out of gopher barky barky
  13. John Lanier

    John Lanier Puritan Board Junior

    Changing or misrepresenting the Word of God is an atrocious thing.

    Except that a Civil War history film does not recount an occurrence in the Word of God that teaches us about sin, God's justice, His covenants, and our need for the redeeming power of Christ. No one is presenting the storyline of a Civil War film to be the Word of God. Sure it could teach us about sin and the need for redemption but it is not a recounting of a Biblical event preserved by God in the manner and words in which He chose to preserve it.

    Imagining details and presenting them as fact are two different things. Although, I think it is dangerous to imagine too many details or present these imaginations in a sermon. A film about the flood cannot be a secular film since it is from the Scriptures. Since it is preserved in the Word of God it cannot be separated from it.
  14. littlepeople

    littlepeople Puritan Board Freshman

    - No, I don't think that's the case. The events recorded in scripture are no more true than any others. All fiction and dramatizations change, misrepresent, or something exaggerate something about history or nature. I can see how one might argue consistently that all forms of storytelling are sinful - I guess I should ask you. Are you ok with historical films so long as the those histories aren't one recorded in scripture? Or do you oppose all historical fiction in movies?
  15. Harley

    Harley Puritan Board Freshman

    I still cannot get the childhood idea out of my head that God has a deep booming voice overdubbed with reverb. I'll pass over this just so I don't aggravate my condition.
  16. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Senior

    From whatI gather the film is using the book of Enoch (or at least it sounds that way from the description) to fill in the gaps.
  17. Gforce9

    Gforce9 Puritan Board Junior

    That about sums up 21st century mainline theology. In the infamous words of Cheech Marin "Save the wales, but shoot them seals..."

    A wise young gal there, Rich.....wiser than all of Hollywood.
  18. puritanpilgrim

    puritanpilgrim Puritan Board Junior

    I think when this is normally done with children the story is very sanitized. God killed all people and land roaming animals, who were not in the ark. I don't know that I would enjoy watching a reenactment of the flood. Everything was destroyed. I find it ironic that we make toys out of the ark and Noah. That wasn't a happy occasion. That was the greatest destruction that this world has ever seen. When I read the story I always picture the flood waters gradually rising and people and more intelligent animals climbing for toward higher ground, probably fighting with one another as the water continued to rise. And despite all of their cries and agony, the wrath of God continued to fall on them. All of the cities, and buildings. All of the inventions destroyed all at once. All of the beauty in created world on land and all of the creativity that man have because he was made in the image of God...destroyed and then remade through Noah's line. A line that, on their own merits deserved to die in the flood as well. When I read I think that is what I deserve apart from God's grace. I don't see why it would be enjoyable to watch that event in full video detail.
  19. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Well, the flood account is not only about unhappiness. It's a place where God's terrible justice in punishing sin meets his loving, saving mercy... probably the strongest example of that anywhere in the Bible until we get to the cross. I agree with you that the flood account usually gets way too sanitized when put in story books for kids, but the biggest shame in that is how kids miss a story which ought to set them up to better understand salvation in Jesus.
  20. Tirian

    Tirian Puritan Board Sophomore

    Besides, they have Russell Crowe as Noah - just won't be the same without Charlton Heston!
  21. littlepeople

    littlepeople Puritan Board Freshman

    Heston was born some 1500 years after Russell Crowe I believe
  22. benjamin1991

    benjamin1991 Puritan Board Freshman

    To sum up the disagreement: is making a film of a Bible story different to making any other historical film?

    I would argue that this comparison is wrong. Noah is a film more in the vein of Troy than a historical film. It's a re-hashing of what is treated like an ancient myth. My problem here is that at what point does the Bible become a Marvel universe type thing and bible characters are "as real" to filmgoers as Thor and Loki? (not that I have a problem with seeing Marvel films, it's clearly fiction) Our society already treats the Bible as fiction and this doesn't seem likely to change that view.

    It's the film's connection to the Bible which means I feel like I should judge very harshly.
  23. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    My take: Historically, Hollywood has acknowledged, to an extent, that the Bible is different from other source material such as ancient myth or Marvel comic books. But it isn't so much that they've revered the Bible; rather that they feel using it comes with "baggage." Hollywood is not comfortable with Bible believers. Hollywood knows that much of its audience includes Bible believers, but doesn't understand them and generally would rather keep its distance from topics and source material that might be seen as sacred to them. There have been notable exceptions, but the number of Bible-based movies that have been made are relatively few given the wealth and familiarity of the source material.

    This may be changing. Evangelical Christians, in particular, have recently embraced Bible-story-based movies even when those movies take atrocious liberties with the Bible account, water down the theological foundations of the stories, and take ridiculous pains to avoid any mention of the gospel. You would think Christians might be up in arms about such revisionism, but they tend instead to feel appreciative that Hollywood has thrown them a bone by making any kind of movie at all based on the Bible. Examples of this are Prince of Egypt (main message: believe in yourself) and The Passion of the Christ (main message: feel sorry for Jesus), both of which are proudly featured in church libraries everywhere.

    Supposedly, the studio that's producing Noah tested it with focus groups that included evangelical leaders and listened to their concerns. This doesn't encourage me much, since the same was supposedly done with Prince of Egypt and that truly blasphemous-in-its-theme movie is said to have gotten a thumbs up.

    I'm not sure it's automatically wrong to make a movie based on Bible stories, even as I acknowledge that the nature of movie-making means such a film would necessarily have to imagine details the Bible doesn't provide. But surely such an undertaking must take place with exceptional care and reverence for the biblical text. It isn't just any source material. And as Hollywood sees that the use of Bible stories might not come with as much baggage as it did previously—and might even bring new audiences into the theater no matter how revisionist the movie script is—we can expect to see more such movies made with less and less care to biblical fidelity. Not that I really expect better from Hollywood, but this irks me. I too find myself wondering if buying a ticket to such a film is ever a good idea.
  24. Wynteriii

    Wynteriii Puritan Board Freshman

  25. John Lanier

    John Lanier Puritan Board Junior

    I am not opposed to historical fiction if it is made clear that it is historical fiction. But I do think there is a difference when you are dealing with Biblical material and therefore am opposed to a fictional representation of a Biblical account.
  26. John Lanier

    John Lanier Puritan Board Junior

    Last edited: Nov 19, 2013
  27. augustacarguy

    augustacarguy Puritan Board Freshman

    That's funny.
  28. Free Christian

    Free Christian Puritan Board Sophomore

    Thanks for putting up that link to AIG John. Wow, its sounds bizarre to the extreme what they have done to the Biblical account. If that's the case then no way do I want to see it. That's wrong on so many levels! You don't, ever, ever, mess with the Word of God!
  29. Mushroom

    Mushroom Puritan Board Doctor

    I refuse to participate. Russell Crowe has a large enough fan base residing in his own head. Besides, shouldn't he be busy preparing for the upcoming invasion of New Zealand? He's an Aussie secret weapon - he could bore half the population to death with his arrogance...
  30. THE W

    THE W Puritan Board Freshman


    We will have none of that..
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