Noah: The Official Movie Novelization Review | Fanboys Anonymous

Noah: The Official Movie Novelization Review

Posted by Anonymous Friday, March 28, 2014
Movie lovers and legend lovers: recently Titan Books contacted us about reviewing Noah, the novel adaptation of the new film about the legendary biblical story. Noah is the man credited with the re-initiation of human life and the saving of animal life during the great flood that destroyed almost all life on Earth. I'm happy to say it was definitely decent, as far as action and fiction goes, though it was hard for me to relate to. Presumably everyone sees the injustice in human existence, but it would be awfully hard to find sympathy for Noah's cause considering he hardly seems sane most of the time.

Russell Crowe Noah movie book novelization
Probably more than anything else that stands out about the literary adaptation of the film is the fact that Noah seems to have a tainted idea of justice, unless you take the story of Abraham and Isaac into account. If most of you will remember, Abraham drags Isaac up the mountain intending to sacrifice him simply because the Lord requests it of him. Doing as the Lord tells him, he raises the sacrificial knife and is about to strike it down on Isaac when an angel grabs his arm and stays the knife. It was just a test. Noah's task in this movie and in the Bible, however, is not a test. Apparently, Noah will cause himself to witness anything to harden himself so he can watch his species die off. My issue with it was that there was no "God said…." His actions were strictly based on his interpretation of visions.

From the beginning, Noah seems to favor the four-legged beasts over humans—humans that eat meat, that is. It sort of draws on the idea that man was meant to be an herbivore, but that the nurturing of evil has caused them to crave meat, to explain a small percentage of the violence of man described in the Bible and the reason for the cleansing. He sets out to build an arc to save two of every animal species because of his visions, but with each step he takes, there is a new obstacle. It plays on the well-known name of Cain, giving a man in Cain's future line a bigger part than he played in the Bible. An interesting fact in my own Bible was that Tubal-Cain's proclaiming that if Cain was cursed for killing Abel, surely Tubal-Cain would be cursed tenfold. It adds a unique possibility to the movie: Tubal-Cain's antisocial personality and his survival of the flood. The bible doesn't strictly say that most of this didn't happen.

Interestingly enough, Methuselah's part in this film seems a bit more prominent than it is in the Bible itself. In the original story, his part is mentioned strictly as the next in the bloodline after Enoch, who begat Lamech, who then begat Noah. Depending on what other religious books you've studied, though, or other media interpretations, you might remember Methuselah playing a larger part, having a relationship with Enoch, ministering to the people with Noah to convince them to change their ways, etc. Enoch, Methuselah's father, was so absolutely pure that he simply was taken into Heaven, and in the movie, Methuselah is renowned as a great and legendary warrior—a protector of the fallen angels.

Noah's Ark: Genesis
The problem with Methuselah is not the fictional, or possibly even true, account of his wars waged, but the fact that the angels on Earth even exist. Most interpretations of the bible account for giants and great warriors, which are both pointed out whether you consider Methuselah, Tubal-Cain, or both as great warriors. As a young man, I remember reading Genesis and studying it. It is, after all, along with the first few books of the Bible the least realistic and possibly the hardest to gain an understanding of. Some interpretations, though—and the way I grew up understanding it—was that angels took human wives, breeding and creating giants, whom tended to be massive, violent warriors with generally shifty, uncontrollable moods. That understanding led me to almost instantly reject the fantasy of giants being present during the creation of man, which is how the book's author wrote his fantasy interpretation. Personally, though, the story of Methuselah struck me as unique and fun.

Another inconsistency was with Noah's children's ages. The bible places them as already in their hundreds and two-hundreds, while the movie places them in their teens and lower. Aside from that, you won't find enough evidence in the Bible to discount everything that happens in the film. For all I know, it all happened.

The reason for my critique has been this: I recently read many articles with complaints about accuracy. I also read many articles concerning the banning of this film in certain countries. I wouldn't call it historically accurate (as the Bible tells it), but then again, neither would I call the Bible accurate. The news hype and hatred surrounding this film seems unwarranted. In fact, if it didn't so heavily take from a biblical story, I might say it makes a pretty good fantasy piece. In closing, I hate Noah as a person, but I enjoyed the Noah religious fantasy story and I thought it was quite brilliant. There's going to be plenty of action and there's going to be many questionable moments, but this twist from the everyday understanding of the interpretations makes for a definitely great film novelization. Tell me what you think downstairs.


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