Sound Off: Darren Aronofsky's Take on 'Noah' - What Did You Think?
by Alex Billington
March 28, 2014
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? The end of the world... is just the beginning. It's time. Now playing in theaters everywhere is Darren Aronofsky's Noah, an epic Hollywood-sized gritty take on the biblical story of Noah's Ark, from Genesis chapters 6-9. Starring as Noah is Russell Crowe, along with Jennifer Connelly as his wife Naameh, and Logan Lerman and Douglas Booth as his children Ham and Shem. As a family, they brave the darkness of humanity and the wrath of God to build an ark and restart life on Earth after God destroys it in the great flood. How is Aronofsky's take on this story? Too ambitious, or too honest? His best yet? Once you've seen it, leave a comment with your thoughts on Aronofsky's Noah.
Spoiler Warning: We strongly urge everyone to actually see the film before reading ahead, as there may be spoilers below. We also encourage all commenters to keep major spoilers from the film to a minimum, if possible. However, this is an open discussion from this point on! Beware of spoilers, don't ruin this film!
To let loose the waters, I've luckily seen Noah twice and would say I loved most of it, but not all of it. There are some incredible scenes, there are a few dull scenes, there are a few odd choices, there are some truly wonderful moments, and there are some surprisingly depressing/frustrating moments. But overall, it's an ambitious, epic and incredibly unique take on a story that I thought couldn't be told any other way. That said, my favorite part: The Watchers, specifically the main rock guy named Og, voiced by Frank Langella. He was awesome, I really loved him, and his character arc to help them. I felt like Aronofsky was reaching back to Harryhausen's style for the Nephilim, right down to the way they move, and the animation itself.
However, my biggest issues with the film are with the way the story progresses at a few points, especially after we've learned about the characters. First, it whips past the construction of the arc without so much as a montage aside from the sun going up/down. We know the Nephilim help him, but it's such a quick cut that it almost feels like they skipped over the tough part on purpose. The other point where it really lost me was when Noah turns so quickly from a generally nice, helpful guy, to incredibly dark and morbid. I couldn't believe his character would turn vile so easily, but it wasn't until the second viewing that I started to really understand the depths of his character, and just how much he has to go through, and just how much of a toll it takes on him. Aside from a few of those flaws, overall I think it's an outstanding and well-made film. Not my favorite Aronofsky, but certainly up there. Plus I must mention that Clint Mansell's score is amazing.
What did you think of Darren Aronofsky's Noah? Masterful storytelling or a biblical disaster?
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