I wrote this after seeing the film in theaters, nearly 3 years ago now:
Well, we went to see Noah this weekend. I wish we hadnít. Now, I wasnít one of the movieís detractors; I expected it to be good. It wasnít.
In the movie, Noah sees a vision of a flood. Realizing that the world is going to be destroyed, and wanting to know what to do, Noah and his family journey across the barren land to see Methuselah. All right, some expansion is understandable; Noah only takes up a few pages in Genesis. But, oh, how they expanded it!
Along the way they rescue a young girl from Cainís descendants. Thatís an understandable expansion, but just wait. Cainís descendents chase Noah, his family, and the girl, into a forbidden zone. This is where the writer/director goes off the deep end. The forbidden zoneís boarder is marked by poles set on a foundation of skulls; sort of like the forbidden zone in ďPlanet of the ApesĒ. As soon as Noah and his family pass the skulls, theyíre captured by ďthe watchers.Ē The watchers are angels who fell trying to help humanity after Adam and Eve were cast out of Eden. Oh, it gets worse. The watchers are encased by rocks; they look like stone-age transformers. One of them helps Noah find Methuselah, who gives Noah a spiked drink. Noah goes on a trip and completes his vision. Yeah, thatís what the director decided.
Anyway, Noah, his, family, and the fallen-rock-angels build the ark, which looks like a big wooden box, and all the animals come. The animals attract Cainís descendants. (Noah was building the ark in a secluded place; before then he lived alone with his family. Heís not a preacher of righteousness in this movie.) Cainí descendants want to kill all of Sethís descendants, so they decide to attack the ark, but they need an army to defeat the angel-boulder-transformers. You know that cool scene in the trailer where Noah tells the King that heís not alone? Well, Noahís not referring to God in that scene; heís talking about the fallen-rock-angels.
Cainís descendants leave to build weapons, and Noah begins to look for wives for his sons. After seeing a vision of manís inhumanity, Noah decides that the Creator wants to save animals, not people, so Noah stops the search. Que melodrama.
Ham leaves to find a wife. He does, but it starts to rain. Noah rescues Ham, but leaves the girl behind. Noah, his family, and the girl they rescued get on the ark. The leader of Cainís descendants also is able to board, by chopping a hole in the arkís side. Somehow, the floodís torrential waves donít rush in and sink the ark, and the only person to notice him is Ham. Ham doesnít tell Noah. Why is never explicitly explained. Letís just assume that Ham is mad at his dad.
The girl Noah and his family rescued was injured. The injury healed, but it made her barren. Just before the flood, however, Methuselah healed her. On the ark, she gets pregnant. Noah, however thinks that God wants men to die off, so he decides to kill the child if itís a girl. Never mind that the filmís repeatedly emphasized that killing is wrong, and that itís a major reason for the flood.
So the day comes and the girl has twins, two girls. Now all three sons can have a wife, but Noah wants to kill the kids. Ham, however has been helping Cainís descendant. During the birth, Ham had Noah come to the shipís lower level, where Cainís descendant plans to kill Noah. Ham is supposed to help, but he canít, so he kills Cainís descendant instead.
They reach land, and Noah discovers that he canít kill his grandchildren. Convinced that he failed God, Noah gets drunk. The girl they found convinces him that God left humanity in his hand to do whatever he wanted with, because Noah is loving and merciful. This satisfies Noah, so they all go to the top of a hill. God appears as a ball of light which shoots rainbow-colored concentric circles. The camera focuses on one of those, fades out, the credits roll, and we leave disappointed.
The problem with this film is that it treats the Bible like a standard fantasy story. No, strike that. The film versions of Lord of the Rings or the Wizard of Oz may have changed the story a bit, but at lease they got the feeling right. This movie didnít. Itís additions did not enhance the story; they detracted from it. Besides, the additions de-emphasized God. A movie based on the Bible shouldnít do that.
Edit: Corrected some grammar & spelling mistakes.