Noah (2014) is Darren Aronofsky’s most recent film, quite a departure from Black Swan (2010), his last directorial effort released four years prior. Noah takes the age old biblical story of the time God decided to flood the Earth to kill off man, upset by human behavior and deviance. However, God wants to save the animals that are innocent. Therefore, He sends His message to Noah to build an Ark and fill it with one male and one female of each species. In the Ark, they will be protected. Once the flood waters disappear, pure life can begin again.
The movie version, of course, takes many artistic liberties. The film is primarily an action flick of good versus evil. Evil is personified through the descendants of Cain, which encompasses everyone except for Noah and his family. The worst crime the villains commit is the consumption of animal meat, an act that is vilified in this film. Through visual imagery, as well as spoken dialogue, the act of eating meat makes a person greedy, lustful, and power hungry. This anti-meat propaganda appears throughout the film multiple times. Though theoretically it coincides with the purpose of saving the animals, it feels out of place with the story. The idea is presented too forcefully, taking away from the true biblical intent.
In fact, most elements of the film are slightly too dramatic. Between the C.G.I. rock formations that serve as the protectors of Noah and his family, the bright, almost blinding, green of the mountain, the A-List cast, Noah’s radical behavior towards his own family- it is just too much in total. The film would have been more impacting if it was smaller. More intimate. More personal. This movie could have been socially relevant to life today, but lost that opportunity when it went for the more commercial appeal.