With all of this hate about the Noah movie pouring forth from the community, I thought I would throw in my two cents about why I personally LOVED the movie (for anyone who cares that is.)
I want to start by stating what I knew about the movie before attending the viewing. I went into the theater with the understanding that this director was an atheist, that it had heavy environmental undertones, and that it would not follow the Bible accurately (The Bible narrative of the Flood is only like 4 Chapters in Genesis, why did anyone think they could make a reasonable film about that without changing things?) I also went in expecting it to be TOTALLY unscriptural from what I was reading online, but in actuality I was impressed by the Christian ideals within it, being that it was directed by an atheist.
THERE ARE SPOILERS COMING!
Here is my preface to clear some things up. If you are one of those who are saying, “There were rock angels, that movie was stupid and not Biblical!” Just stop and allow for creative liberties within the story telling process, or at least stop for now while you read this article.
Here is why the rock angels didn’t bother me. I went into this movie with the idea that it would be sort of like Tolkien’s “The Silmarillion,” a book which essentially reads like the Old Testament but with more wildly outlandish fairytale storylines and plots. Anyone who knows about “The Silmarillion” knows that Tolkien wrote it as a fictional history of our planet (which is exactly how the ATHEIST director of this film probably views the Bible, which is why it makes sense that he portrayed the Noah story as a fantasy). So with that being said just take all of the fantasy and weirdness aspects of the movie and place it aside for now, so that we can move on to the themes of the film.
So here is where I tell you why I absolutely loved the Noah movie. I think it would help during all of this to remember that, again, this director is a self-described atheist. That means he does not believe in God, he does not understand the metanarrative of the scripture, and he most importantly does not understand the grace and redemption found in our Lord and Savior Jesus. Or at least he does not understand those things on a complete level. (If he did, he would probably be a Christian and would have made a more accurate and more redemptive film).
Okay, sorry, NOW is where I tell you why I loved the Noah movie. Here it comes. I loved it because this atheist director clearly laid out the Biblical belief of a broken and lost humanity that is deserving of Judgment and death by our Creator. A Biblical belief that is necessary to understand in order to lead one to repentance and redemption in Jesus.
Now, let me quickly put another accusation to rest before we move on. People have been saying “They don’t even say “God” in the film!” First of all, “God” was not a word back then, it didn’t even exist in their vocabularies.
In the movie they called God “Creator” which I think is fitting as He is the Creator. In fact, I would argue the Creator was a very prominent character in the movie, as Noah was very determined to obey the Creator even to the point of killing babies. So those who are saying “God” is not in the film are just flat wrong. The Creator was a definitive character in the movie.
So lets think about this. This atheist director clearly put God in the movie as a definitive character. That’s a good start for me. On top of that, he went through the creation narrative and very clearly pointed out that man sinned and brought corruption into the world. He did that within the first 3 minutes of the movie. So that was probably one of the clearest themes in the whole movie. People sinned and corrupted the perfect Creation that God had made. I hope that most people would agree with me on this, as it seemed like a very obvious theme.
Now I do understand that the director was attempting to make a more environmentally friendly stance on this story. Which is why there was a great emphasis on nature being God’s perfect Creation, and those who killed animals were considered “evil.” Things like that. Now that sounds ridiculous to us, but If you read in Genesis 9:3, after the flood occurs, God tells Noah “Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. I have given you all things, even as the green herbs.” This is the first time that God tells man that he may eat animals for food. I could be totally wrong on this, but I think that means that man was not allowed to kill and eat animals before that time. Which means that in the perfect Creation, man was living with animals, not consuming them. Something to think about when judging the environmental attitudes this film is pushing. (I actually don’t see how the environmental stance of this film should differ from a Christian perspective. All that was being pushed was the idea that we should take care of the environment and not destroy it, which I don’t think is unscriptural in any way.)
I don’t want to get off track so let’s get back to Noah himself as a character. In the beginning of the movie we were all on Noah’s side. He wanted to obey God. He understood that man was corrupt and that the earth needed to be reborn after the flood. He understood those things and understood clearly why the Earth needed to be flooded. Early on in the film, we as the audience could easily climb aboard that logic train and ride it straight into the Noah fan club.
Where everyone got off the Noah train was right around the time that he wanted to kill those babies and watch his family slowly die off the earth. I totally understand how unnerving that was, and totally get why people were upset that the movie portrayed Noah in that way. Now I am not saying that any of that is Biblically accurate, but let’s not throw it out as nonsense, because I still feel that it still plays on the side of Christian Belief.
Let me explain why I think that crazy Noah was okay. We were so quick to be offended by Noah almost killing those two baby girls because he believed that it was the will of the Creator, but we forget that God actually did command another man (Abraham) to kill his son. Now granted that son was not a baby, and God actually didn’t allow Abraham to kill him. But, We have to look at it from the perspective of a fallen humanity. Noah seemed to be going crazy, but he was still (in his mind) following the creator, and he understood that mankind was broken and corrupted and the only way for the world to be perfect again was for mankind to cease to be on the world. That seems pretty logical to me.
So yes, it was weird of the director to put that in the movie, It was a pretty intense and definitely not in the Bible. However, I feel that the Noah character truly understood that mankind is broken, that we are all corrupted and we will corrupt this earth for as long as we are living on it in our unredeemed state. That is definitely a Christian worldview, and I feel that the director clearly portrayed that worldview in this film.
Now here is where I feel it gets off. The end of the film attempts to bring in a redemption aspect. It tries to tell us that we are broken and we are corrupt but God gives us the choice to be loving and kind instead, and we can do that if we choose to. Now this gets off the Christian worldview a bit, and that is understandable as the director of our film was, again, an atheist who does not completely understand the Christian doctrine of redemption in Christ.
Our view of redemption is that yes, humanity is broken and the world is corrupt due to our sin (which this movie portrays so well), BUT, the Creator does not want to wipe us out completely(which the movie led us to believe). He wants to see us restored to what He originally intended, and He has done that and is doing that through the Death, Burial and Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
So again, here is a final statement about my feelings of this film. (I am sorry if I jumped around a lot, these were just some things on my mind and I wanted to get them out there. I am also sorry for how long this is).
I feel that for this movie being directed by an atheist, it was a good film as it clearly portrayed the Christian Doctrine of original sin. That man is evil and corrupt because of Adam’s original sin and because of that we are deserving of Judgment. While the movie would like you to believe that the flood was to destroy ALL humanity, scripture reveals a different narrative. A narrative that shows that the flood was a way to protect those righteous of heart, who would continue to follow the Creator even to the coming of the Messiah. The one who would take the sins of the world and redeem a broken humanity back to it’s perfect state.
So I really don’t understand the hating on this film. It was definitely a creative way to tell the Flood narrative, but I feel that for the most part it stayed true to some very prominent and important Christian Doctrines. Perhaps there were some out there who saw this movie and realized the brokenness of humanity, that we are deserving of judgment, and perhaps those same people will seek and find redemption in Jesus.