Exodus Movie: Promised Land or Golden Bull?

Hollywood, still wet from the soaking it took from Noah, has headed for the desert with Moses in the new movie Exodus: Gods and Kings. Surely this time we have a foolproof crowd pleaser filled only with milk and honey? Or, instead, is it going to be a lot of grumbling at bitter herbs?

The movie, which opens today, stars Christian Bale, best known for his Batman portrayal, and is directed by Ridley Scott, no stranger to big screen extravaganzas like his film Gladiator. In 3D, and costing an estimated $140, 000,000, this must have appeared a formidable proposition. I mean, with all of that in a biblical epic, what could possibly go wrong?

After The Passion of the Christ, the studio heads discovered there was a market for movies based on the Bible. Blowing the dust off their copies, they started to scan its pages for gold. And so, this year, along floats Noah, earning just shy of three times its budget. Its mixed reception was too late for 20th Century Fox to reconsider its own pilgrimage to the promised land with this latest Moses movie.

Is it necessary to mention plot spoilers? If you are not familiar with the plot, and even some of the details of the plot, where have you been for the last 3,000 years? Therefore, I will assume most of us know the story and its central character: Moses. In any event, it is the filmmakers’ interpretation here that is key.

Exodus posterSo first off let’s look at Bale’s portrayal of Moses. It was telling that the star described in an interview this key figure of the Bible as both mentally ill and barbaric. Was he getting confused with his Batman role? Or perhaps his comments were deliberately calculated to make headlines. They did. Nonetheless, true to his word, he plays the Old Testament figure like a man ill at ease, humorless, vain, and, for all the movies’ 3D imagery, one-dimensional. I was expecting some kind of before-and-after transformation on experiencing the Burning Bush. Well, before he is surly and arrogant and then afterwards, surly, arrogant, and disturbed. All this gives us a “new Moses,” of course, one radically different from what has gone before on screen, especially—heaven forbid—the one played by Charlton Heston. This is Moses for a new generation. Just as in recent times popular media has turned Sherlock Holmes from an English gent into someone the police need to keep an eye on, so we have Moses as the tribal psychopath—a sort of gang supremo with messianic delusions, or just poor medication. He has to be anything other than a leader of a nation of believers sure of its place in the universe as the Chosen People.

To the Plot, Such As It Is
Now to the plot, such as it is. Suffice it to say that this movie is very loosely based on the first 14 chapters of Exodus. There is an epilogue of sorts that does seem to cover not just the rest of Exodus but the other three books in which Moses’ story is told, all in double quick time—20 minutes or so. That said, on this occasion we can be only too grateful that the film makers did not try to include all of Leviticus in this epic—not that they included much of Exodus, come to think of it.

As one would expect in a biblical epic, there is a lot of spectacle. The large crowd scenes, and those of the various plagues, all impress; it’s just that the spectacle starts to wear after a while. Like looking at a beautiful sky or a building, it’s nice, but I don’t want to spend 2.5 hours staring at it. Most audiences like a plot, and there is one. But it is not quite what you might expect.

Moses and Pharaoh have been raised together. Then the former finds out he is not who he thought he was. The audience will also share this feeling by the end of the film. At this point, however, you may be expecting the story to follow the path laid down for it in Scripture. Not at all. Yes, Moses kills some Egyptians, though it’s unclear why. Then he appears to be banished by an Egyptian court for being a Hebrew. Reluctantly, he goes off, and then marries and becomes a goat herder. His new relatives tell him if he goes up a nearby mountain “God will kill you.” Of course, in the next scene, he is heading up the mountain in a thunderstorm. (Only in the movies.)

So here at last, I thought, we are going to have the calling of Moses and the start of the tale we have all grown up with: a return to Egypt and then the plagues, escape into the desert, various wonderings, etc. Well, not quite. You see, Moses suffers a bump on the head—a large boulder hits him—and upon awakening, he finds himself in a pool of mud completely covered except for his face … but there is a burning bush nearby. Hope for us yet? No. This time a young boy appears. Is he some kind of Messianic showing? The boy seems to be “God.” I say “seems” because he is a truculent and bossy adolescent who cares little for the people who will be harmed by his proposals. We are never quite sure whether the boy is a mere figment of Moses’ imagination, or the result of a head injury. I could go on but you get the picture.

The boy’s appearance marks the point where this movie leaves the pages of Sacred Scripture and heads to those of Tolkien, or some latter day mythological super hero. Thereafter, Moses goes back to free the Hebrew slaves for reasons known only to him. On his arrival and on warning the Pharaoh, who is none too pleased to see him back, Moses goes underground, becoming a guerrilla leader who trains his fellow Israelites in the arts of war. Of course, this does no good at all, leaving the Israelites no better off, worse in fact, until the plagues come—and Moses seems as unhappy with this occurrence as the Egyptians. Odd, but odder still is the rationalist explanations for the plagues given to the Egyptian court. After all, if it were all so simple why didn’t they do something about it? Finally, the slaves are freed, and head off into the desert where the climactic scene is the parting of the Red Sea.

One wonders if all this water is what was left over from Noah. I suspect it comes from the same source. Well it floods everything—sorry, another spoiler alert—including Moses who swims ashore. So, why didn’t the Egyptians swim after them? Ridley Scott has said somewhere that he thinks this miracle can be attributed to some form of natural cause, something to do with the draining off of a tsunami—no, I don’t understand that either. Maybe the waters did recede naturally, and the Israelites just walked across by chance; maybe Moses was not really called into the desert before a burning bush; maybe all the plagues were just naturally occurring environmental disasters; maybe there was no Covenant forged in the desert, and maybe…. Well, what are we left with? One tribe wanders around the desert for 40 years much to the chagrin of another tribe, and then wanders into another land where they start fighting with all the local tribes. May as well have made a Western. It would have been a lot cheaper.

The epilogue is worth mentioning only because it is so absurd. Moses heads back home to his wife. On seeing the crowd behind him, she asks, like many a wife would when friends are unexpectedly brought back for dinner, who are all these people?—all 400,000 of them that is. Leaving the audience with the vague suspicion that the whole point of the escape from Egypt was so the Israelites could all come over to Moses’ place for supper. As Moses and his wife become friends again, I hoped that was it, but no. In the last 10 minutes or so—I kid you not—we have the Golden Bull, the inscribing of the Ten Commandments, though they are not called that, and then an elderly Moses in a wagon with the Ark of the Covenant. It says something for a film like this that one is glad to see the Golden Bull turn up: at last, a familiar face.

So we have a biblical epic with much epic and little that is biblical. Lots of loud speech-making by actors, before crowds of Israelites and crowds of Egyptians, lots of chariots and lots of weary trudging about, acres of desert with moving sands, and by the end lots of water sloshing about—but after a while one longs for some kind of terra firma and a conversation about what lies behind all this: faith, or to be more exact, the Covenant. Instead we have a cross between The Mummy melodramas and a Lord of the Rings style escape movie, mystical hokum mixed up with pure hokum.

At times, it all did feel heavy going. Be warned, near the end of the screening I attended, another critic had a panic attack—on thinking he would be at the theatre for the cinematic equivalent of what the Israelites had endured in the desert: forty years; rest assured—it just feels that way.

Where to start with this film’s biblical theology? Perhaps, it is easier to sum up: there isn’t any. This is a Bible-based movie only in marketing terms. The very opening gives the game away: “1300 BCE,” not BC—we are in the secular world’s version of the past, not a faith based one. The only time the word faith is used is when Moses’ wife berates him for confusing their son’s faith in God. By the end of the movie I knew exactly how the lad felt. Those who know their Bibles will come away scratching their heads wondering: what was that? Those that don’t will come away scratching their heads wondering: what was that? I suspect, like the Israelites in the desert, neither will be satisfied with the fare on offer here.

Whether you know or don’t know Moses, what I urge all when near a movie theatre showing Exodus: Gods and Kings, is that you turn around and start to walk—quickly and decisively—in the opposite direction. And if it so happens that you encounter any golden bull on the loose, point it to the aforementioned theatre where it will be very much at home.

K. V. Turley

By

K. V. Turley is a London based freelance writer and filmmaker with a degree in theology from the Maryvale Institute.

  • Robert Leblanc

    Well, your review is either spectacularly good or spectacularly bad. I usually read a review and then say “Well that was a good review but I think I will go and see for myself”. In this case, I have read your review and I have firmly decided that they is a movie I can definitely take a pass on.

  • R. K. Ich

    Wasn’t going to see this tripe to begin with; but your review confirms everything I suspected it would be.

  • St JD George

    The only movies that have caught my interest of late were produced by Roma Downey and her husband Mark Burnett. One could argue over details but there was no doubt about where their hearts were in making the movie. I even had room for Mel Gibson’s Passion as hard as it was to watch. I have no interest in seeing revisionist Bible stories told by a non-believer and contorted on the big screen to make the most bucks to appease the widest audience, sorry. What makes me sad though is that most people subconscious or not leave with the impression that this is the factual history of the Bible and form their opinions for life because of what they saw, never bothering to read or probe any deeper. In that way it is a form of bad propaganda which twists minds. This may not be as over the top as some others like Noah, but it still interests me little.

    • The only movies that have caught my interest of late were produced by Roma Downey and her husband Mark Burnett.

      You mean the fraud “married” by Reverend Della Reece?

      • St JD George

        I really don’t know anything about her other than that they co-starred together on the TV show. She always struck me as a little bit over bearing. I did not know her first name was Reverend. I pray she didn’t get hers from the same mill that gave old Al Sharp-Tongue his papers.

  • JP

    I haven’t seen the movie, but I did hear a review of the movie by 2 Catholic movie reviewers on the radio this morning. They essentially said there were 2 sub-plots: the first being the plight of the Israelites; and the second being Moses struggles to obey God. The reviewers agreed that Christian Bale’s Moses, was a times almost defiant of God. Bale’s Moses was more post-modern than what the OT portrayed. The CGI was great, and the actor who played Pharaoh was more human than what was portrayed in other Exodus films.

    One of the reviewers made an observation that Christian Bale’s depiction of Moses closely mirrors today’s dissident Christians in style and philosophy. In other words, Ridely Scott appears to make Moses that most people today can identify with. I’m not sure it worth seeing the film on the big screen. It all depends a person is willing to fork over.

    • fredx2

      I’d say this movie would be a waste to spend 8 dollars a ticket on, with all the trimmings. If you really need to see it, this is one that can wait a few months until it comes out in Redbox. Then you are only wasting 1.29

      • MarcAlcan

        It’s not worth the waste of 2 hours or so.

    • AugustineThomas

      You should recognize that all movies about history now make the main characters out to be possessed by the mind of contemporary man, which cures the barbarians of their false beliefs.
      Contemporary men are arrogant and stupid so they have no problem with giving this same, juvenile, stupid treatment over and over and over again.

    • imabitterclinger2

      This sounds just like Noah. Why does Hollywood think every biblical figure have to “struggle to obey God”? As I recently pointed out, God is not a God of confusion, but of peace. Any “struggle to obey God” movies automatically are off my list.

  • samharker

    When I saw Moses with a sword in his hand, I decided this movie wasn’t worth seeing.

  • fredx2

    The plan appears to be:
    1) Make a movie with a biblical theme.
    2) Sell it to people as a traditional telling of a great, well known story. This is intended to bump up sales and trick Christians into going to it, to simply rip them off.
    3) Then give them a story that has no relationship to the bible at all, except to try to tell you that everything you read about in the bible was made up.
    4) The movie makers know they have more sway over the minds of the young than anyone else, so they are in essence propagandizing to a biblically unlearned generation, seeking to convince them to be sour know nothings like the people in Hollywood.

    The tip off was the title. “Gods” as if there were more than one.
    Relevant Radio has been discussing this movie, but in all cases they pronounce the title “God and Kings”.

    • St JD George

      You read my thoughts, didn’t you.

    • karen

      I agree with you on all points except I think the mis-telling is purposeful. The younger generation is biblically illeriterate and will come away with believing this as true history. In my daughter’s high school history class (public school) they are watching “Elizabeth”. She said that she’s getting tired of seeing movies about ” the big bad Catholics ” and the kids believe it. When she points out that she is Catholic they tell her that she’s “one of the good ones”. They never learn anything good about the Church and her contributions to Western civilization. Western civilization is based on Judeo-Christian principles. Hollywood is re-telling these bible stories to discredit the founders, so people don’t seek the Truth. Writing Noah and Moses as crazy and taking God out of the picture feeds the conception that religious people are crazy and God does not exist.

      • AugustineThomas

        They never learn that the Church is Western Civilization. They never learn that they wouldn’t have their precious, easy modern lives without the Church because without the Church there would be no modernity.
        It is truly one of the most desperate periods in the history of the Church. There are so few schools where you can send your children to get the real history of the world.

      • zoltan

        Wow, not only is Elizabeth historically inaccurate, there are some pretty inappropriate scenes for a high school classroom too.

  • Dominic

    Thanks for a clever and funny review. Wasn’t going to see this anyway but at least now I managed to get a laugh out of it. I’ll keep an eye out for those pesky Golden Bulls.

  • me, myself & I r all here

    hopefully, it’ll join noah on the heap of dead movies…….. watched the interview with raymond arroyo on ewtn and he seemed to give similar advice……
    i’ll be watching mary of nazareth instead, a great film!

  • Tpr1976

    I admit….I was un-inspired when the first preview came out and further reviews and revelations have confirmed my anticipation of disappointment.
    I will still see the film. I don’t know if it will be in the theaters or not, but I don’t know if it will win me over the way Noah did. I appreciated Noah for its’ midrashic qualities and the questions of discerning the will of God. The Noah story is a lousy story anyways and the movie made me not hate it.
    Hollywood occasionally will get Bible movies right, but only occasionally.
    Jesus of Nazareth
    Nativity Story
    Gospel of John
    but….for those of us who are believers….we’ve been subjected to garbage like
    Passion of the Christ
    The Bible series on the History Channel
    The Last Temptation of Christ
    Son of God (i.e. the History Channel version shrunk down)
    and I will say it…….”The 10 Commandments” (I cannot stand Charlton Heston!)

    As Moses movies go……… Prince of Egypt was alright and that one with Ben Kingsley looks pretty good (I still need to finish it).

    Point is…… Not many movie makers can do the Bible well, but when it works…..it’s wonderful.
    Ridley Scott…..I’ll still watch your movie, but I am not gonna die of shock if I don’t like it.

    • TERRY

      ‘Mary of Nazareth’ Ignatius press

    • zoltan

      Why do you think the Passion of the Christ is garbage?

      • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

        Those of us who think the Gibson Gore Fest is garbage are keenly aware of Gibson’s compulsive need in film after film to show very good looking young men being tortured naked in gruesome ways. Kinky, yes. Catholic, no.

        • MarcAlcan

          You’ve got to be kidding.
          Passion of the Christ is great.
          Did you think that the torture of Christ was a walk in the park or did you think that He must not have been good looking?

          • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

            You are absolutely right. P of C’s underground reputation as a gay S&M favorite is well earned. I like your one word review… it is ‘great’. That is very convincing.

            • MarcAlcan

              P of C’s underground reputation as a gay S&M favorite is well earned

              You’ve got to be seriously sick in the head to think that depiction of the suffering of our Lord is a gay S&M. Might be a good idea to take your brain out of the gutter.

              • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

                Huh? I am agreeing with you. It is VERY sick people we are talking about – why does that put my mind in the gutter?

                • MarcAlcan

                  Well how about this: P of C’s underground reputation as a gay S&M favorite is well earned.
                  Ergo, you agree with them. So if their mind is in the gutter for thinking so, then so is yours.

      • Tpr1976

        Passion was a hyper-macho gore fest more concerned with an excess of blood than with good artistic interpretation of the Passion. Gibson inflamed anti-Semitic attitudes and misused characters like Barabbas, the Roman soldiers and Herod to be these odd buffoons or dumb brutes.
        I know that a crucifixion is going to be bloody, but it became almost laughable.
        I did like the Aramaic and Latin though. Jim Caviezel was good, but then I couldn’t see his eyes for half the movie.
        Peter and Mary his mother were good actors too.
        Other than that, I found it to be this Jesus is like Rocky Balboa themed hyper macho gore fest with way too much slow-motion.

        • imabitterclinger2

          You gave an Interesting review, and I certainly respect it. I never thought of the Passion of the Christ like that. I have always been taught that Jesus spent every ounce of his blood on the cross for the redemption of man. I never took that to be a figure of speech. I always thought that the punishment of all mankind heaped on a single person would be rather gory, and this interpretation gave me what I expected. For that reason, my opinion was quite the opposite of yours.

          • Tpr1976

            I have no doubt that Jesus exsanguinated on the cross. I just feel that the way Gibson showed it, He should’ve died before they even gave Him the cross to carry. No human body contains that much blood. Jesus became just a piece of meat and not someone that we could connect or relate to. It was so over the top that they impact was lost and it became absurd. If it touches people and their connection to Christ deepens by viewing it, then good for them. I feel that the story has been told better by other artists.

        • MarcAlcan

          Passion was a hyper-macho gore fest

          Do you think the reality was not like that? Really hyper-gore? Do you think the Romans were not really that barbaric and vile?

          • Tpr1976

            There’s a better way of portraying it than Gibson’s.
            He’s a Pius X Society member who feels that Vatican II was wrong and ought not to have happened.
            It’s not a question of “you mean you don’t think the crucifixion was bloody?”
            Of course it was bloody, but it just became absurd after a while. There’s realistic injuries and then there’s (excuse the pun) flogging a dead horse. Jesus was just a piece of meat for more than half the movie and once we got to the crucifixion it was completely anti-climactic.
            I don’t think the most effective way of portraying the Passion is to slice and dice every inch of Jesus skin for 2 and a half hours. 10 minutes into the movie he is punched in the face and we cannot see 1 of his eyes for the entire rest of the film. We need those eyes to connect to the actor who was doing a good job, but I couldn’t see both his eyes. It’s hard to connect to that.
            Also, Gibson did nothing to tamp down the anti-Semitic interpretations of the Passion that people have done over the centuries.

            • MarcAlcan

              There’s a better way of portraying it than Gibson’s.
              He’s a Pius X Society member who feels that Vatican II was wrong and ought not to have happened.

              And how is his being SSPX relevant to the whether the movie was quite accurate in the depiction of the passion of the Lord?

              Of course it was bloody, but it just became absurd after a while.

              There certainly was a lot of blood and gore but if you think it is indeed like that, then why should it not be depicted so. I think for the most part we have a very sanitized view of the Passion of the Lord and now we have there before us like how it could actually have happened.

              Also, Gibson did nothing to tamp down the anti-Semitic interpretations of the Passion that people have done over the centuries.

              I don’t know if it is anti-Semitism but the Gospels were clear it was the Pharisees who machinated to have Him killed. We read the Bible a little bit detached from it all not having witnessed a crucifixion ourselves. Then there it was on the screen. It makes us uncomfortable as it should.

  • cestusdei

    Thanks for the review. I won’t be going to this movie. I do not want to reward them for destroying the story.

  • Douglas Pearson

    I hope the movie is as funny as this article! Very well written and fun to read.

  • I do not patronize Hollywood. If I need trivial amd mindless entertainment, there’s “Pawn Stars”, and “Storage Wars”, I sit in my chair, and don’t worry about what was spilled on the seat by a previous patron.

  • donna

    Scott is clearly an anti Judeo Christian bigot with an agenda. His film on crusades was an ahistoric outrage. He should be ignored and not given any serious critical comment. Trailers for this nonsense were variously hilarious and offensive. Dialogue written in post modern colloquialisms of late adolescent boys. So intention was “camp”. There are many screenwriters and historians who are capable of writing a screenplay with authenticity i.e. Spartacus Gods of arena. This is as sickening as fraternity boy comedies. He deserves to have his career ruined.

    • WaveRunnerMN

      Recent archeological evidence (I hope these 5+ letter words don’t challenge many a reader) …has indicated that the Jews in Egypt were in a caste system and not allowed to own land…and sometimes found themselves in a tenant farming situation. In addition, many later became civil servants and tradespersons being forced to live in their “own particular neighborhoods”. Moses –led the Jews out of Egypt and settled for 40 years in preparation to ATTACK the land of Canaan. Moses needed to build an army and a new warrior tribe in order to return to “their promised land”. The movie SUCKS and are for the misinformed…Hollywood making millions on stupid people.

  • TERRY

    Mr. Turley;

    Please accept my thanks for saving me $8.50 – $4 for the flick, $1 for the 3d glasses, $1 for the small pepsi and $1.50 for the small buttered popcorn, and spending the afternoon reading P.G. Wodehouse – a much better use of my time.

    BTW – The Narrow Gauge Cinema in Farmington, Maine, for those of you who wonder at the price-paucity of which I speak.

  • RufusChoate

    I guess I am just cranky after listening to a BBC podcast about Siege of Vienna that portrayed the entire issue as a minor disturbance and no big deal and it was almost apologetic about the Turks failure but this is too much.

    Ridley Scott is a modern British man. A cultural Atheist who is simply too sophisticated and smart to stick to the biblical narrative in the same way he was too open minded to describe the crusades honestly and default to the Walter Scott version of the noble Saladin myth in his Kingdom of Heaven venture.

    I suspect that Scott would never approach the myths of Islam with the same skepticism that he afford Judeo-Christian scripture.

    The ads for this dreck have been non-stop on the web and you can tell merely from them that it is awful on every level. Christian Bale… seriously? American Psycho in the desert.

    I will also note that most of the cinematic portrayals of the Ancient Egyptian endow their theology and pantheon of gods with astounding and incomprehensible powers but when it comes to the true God they fear his power over the human mind too much to be honest with him.

    I seem to recall that the miracle of the Exodus like all things the almighty does is the complete helplessness of the people he rescues from oppression.

    • Suburbanbanshee

      Since Jesus is the New Moses (among other things) and Easter is the New Passover, and since Chanukah is in December, it should have been a very appropriate time for an Exodus movie. As it happens, it probably offends everybody except the Muslims. Maybe them too.

      • RufusChoate

        Okay no trouble with your theological points about the nature of Christ but Isn’t a Hanukkah a celebration of the restoration and purification of the Temple by the Maccabees? Now that would be a great movie for Christmas but considering the martial nature and the theological conundrum for the Protestant and Muslim groups would not be well received.

      • GrantM

        Noah was banned here in Indonesia, not because it contradicts the Bible but because it contradicts the Quran, folks, and that matters at lot round here. As Moses (Nabi Musa) is an honoured prophet of Islam along with Noah (Nabi Nuh), I await the Muslim reaction to this film in sardonic anticipation..

  • Thomas A. Szyszkiewicz

    I fear you have insulted Tolkein. I wouldn’t put this rendering (and I choose that term very carefully — farmers will know why) of Exodus on the level of such high fiction as the Lord of the Rings.

    • Nick_Palmer3

      Amen, Thomas. Having read Tolkien’s letters, I can only imagine how much more caustic, nay, incendiary his review of this movie would have been!

  • Donna Ruth

    Phew! Thanks for this review! You saved us all a lot of money.

    But, what a disappointment.

  • Christian Bale speaks facts. Moses is schizophrenic. He talks to a burning bush. Thanks to the awesome work of Dr. James Harris of Bringham Young University, it is now 100% confirmed that YHWH (“Yahweh”) is a snäke god. Actually, YHWH is a snäke god (Ea or Yah) and a tree goddess (Hawah or Asherah). They are Arabian fertility gods.

    YHWH is the snäke of the Tree of Life or snäke-pole or caduceus. This is the rod of Moses and the brass idol he asked Hebrews to worship. Their symbol is the yin-yang Menorah. The base of the menorah is a snäke head and forked tongue. The tree branches are Asherah’s hot “bush,” tongued by Yah. This has been confirmed through inscriptions in the Negev desert and pottery during Moses’ time. The fëllatio symbol or menorah is YHWH through proto-Canaanite or Old Negev script.

    Yah is also a barbäric snäke since he has sëx with his mother, half-sister, daughter, granddaughter and great granddaughter, just as Abraham has sëx with his half-sister Sarah. Abraham’s nephew Lot also has sëx with his daughters but the Bible considers him to be righteous. Abraham also has sëx with his maid Hagar, just like Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, so everyone remembers him as Conan the Barbärian. Moses also saved 32,000 virg|n girls as plunder for the Hebrews after ki||ing thousands of their men.

    Read the following website by copying the URL…tiny.cc/yahweh

    • AugustineThomas

      It’s so sad to me that there are people like yourself stupid enough to believe these secularist conspiracy theories.

    • ColdStanding

      I hesitate to ask, but… What’s with all the umlauts?

  • Tony

    I wonder what Jewish believers will think of the utter contempt to which the greatest of their prophets, and the meekest of men, as Scripture says, is subjected.

  • Tony

    The old Biblical epics sometimes failed because they were a bit too sweet; but they were never contemptuous of the faith.

    If you are making a Biblical epic, you have to stack up against Ben-Hur, The Ten Commandments, and Jesus of Nazareth. Quo Vadis is inconsistent but very interesting. Barabbas is much better than its reception at that time suggested.

    It seems that this movie suffers from the deadly maladies that plague most “big” movies now:

    1. Computer generated images
    2. Adolescent dialogue
    3. “Clever” new interpretations, which are also adolescent
    4. Pretty boy men and sourpuss feminists
    5. Overbearing scores
    6. Lots of money, no brains
    7. Overbearing cinematography
    8. Anticlimax upon anticlimax
    9. Nastiness substituting for good sense
    10. “Look at me!” direction

    • RufusChoate

      Haha.. Thank you for the laugh. Well put.

  • Steve Jalsevac

    Thanks you for this article. Much needed.

    • Lpse Venena Bibas

      Steve, when you were in the military was it acceptable to trash talk your superiors? How far could it go until it became insubordination? So I’m confused why its okay for you to join in the Pope bashing and allow others to do the same under your watch. It really serves no Godly purpose to comment on a highly fluid situation that we have very little perspective. We must stay focused on God’s will during this trial. To do otherwise is to be party to evil.

      • Steve Jalsevac

        Your comment is totally inappropriate in the context of the discussion of this movie. It reveals a near fanatical intolerance of the freedom of other believing Catholics to respectfully express concerns about the possible harm to the faith of certain statements or actions by Church leaders.

        Your frequent condemnation of faithful Catholics expressing such valid concerns not at all forbidden by Canon law to laity or religious is an overbearing judgmentalism. “Pope bashing” is a harsh judgement against this rightful freedom within Catholicism.

        Pope Francis himself has often said he encourages comments and criticisms about his actions and statements. He comprehends that we are not in a “military” organization with totalitarian laws suppressing natural freedoms.

        I suggest you cease your constantly lording it over other Catholics who you have decided are not as pure and righteous as yourself and as in tune with “God’s Will” as you believe you are so chosen to be. Be far more prudent about your reckless accusations about faithful Catholics, who you really know nothing about yet judge to be “party to evil.” One day you will have to answer for these accusations so easily and frequently spouted against the faith and personal reputation of fellow believers.

        • Lpse Venena Bibas

          Love to you and yours this Christmas…

          • Steve Jalsevac

            Then look to yourself first Bibas. There is grevious sin of calumny there.

            • MarcAlcan

              I am not Bibas and I am only replying to you because I am annoyed that you blocked me from Lifesite news when my views were very much in accord with what the Church teaches and with Lifesite News views.
              You are a moderator there but it seems you can’t even distinguish when someone is “quoting” the text that one is replying to and the actual reply.
              Yes I had included 344871s text in my post but the only reason it was there was to show exactly the point being addressed.
              You are a moderator and one would think that you should at least be able to differentiate that but it seems not. Read posts better.

  • FW Ken

    I thought the Red Sea thing was due to global warming.

  • joannemary

    Oh, brother. And the title is a dead give a way.

  • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

    Ever since they shaved Jeffrey Hunter’s armpits for the crucifixion in “King of Kings”, I have been leery of Tinseltown reverence.

  • Ivan Latham

    Okay, so the script departs majorly from the Biblical narrative. But at least Hollywood is drawing people’s attention back to the Bible. If only one person on the planet goes away and reads the real story in the Good Book, then it will have been worth it.

  • AugustineThomas

    I always lament that I live in a time so full of stupid people.

  • M.J .

    ‘The beast like a leopard ‘ is what we have been warned against , that comes in creeping , a little contempt here , a little confusion there and the precious pearl of faith has been trampled and destroyed by the swine !
    Living in England , the author possibly well familar with the aftermaths !
    Thank God that we are blessed with rather true images of what actually took place , in Exodus, throgh writings of Bl.Emmerich, in the book series ‘Life of Jesus ‘ ;
    hope families who have seen the movie , would do the penanace of reading the series ,with the kids .
    All that oil wealth – do any think that it is being put to use by the prince of this world and its agents ..and buying tickets for such as above , letting one be robbed more than once ..
    unless , one sits in there , pleading for mercy , on all involved ..incluidng for those in the audience ..which can be a good practice , on almost all such occasions – sports , walking through the neighborhoods ..and allow the flood waters of enemy deceptions to be lifted away from hearts , to know that The Father that we love is not a liar and that those who have gone under such a one , we are asking The Mother, to sweep them in her mantle to help to see The Light on The Adorable Face of a Little Babe , whose smile
    can help to wipe away much of the cynicism .
    ? Bored for the holidays – how about a walk through the sections of the homeless , give out a little blessed medal or holy card image , a dollar or two, some food even may be and the whole family can ive and help to live the whole exodus experience !

  • schmenz
  • zoltan

    Thank you for the review; I refuse to give my money to these godless sodomites who do everything in their power to destroy the stories of the Bible. How long did it take to make a biblical movie after The Passion? Hollywood hates God.

  • ppablo50

    While I appreciate the effort to review the movie, I have to admit, I don’t think I watched the same film as the author. In the interest of dialogue and discussion, I’d like to propose that Exodus was very entertaining and mostly true to the biblical story. Certainly, liberties were taken, but that was expected from a director who freely admits his own lack of knowledge of God. It would take a very long comment to disagree with each of the author’s points, but I feel it’s necessary to say that a faithful Christian was not offended or bored by this theatrical interpretation of Exodus. On the contrary, I left the theater more connected with God and more interested in reading Scripture.

    • MarcAlcan

      Certainly, liberties were taken, but that was expected from a director who freely admits his own lack of knowledge of God.

      Well then it would be a waste of time to watch a movie about God when the director is clueless about Him don’t you think?

      • ppablo50

        Not necessarily, you need to watch the movie through a critical lens but it doesn’t mean that ignorance of the filmmaker eliminates all chance of redeeming value. For instance, I was very moved by the first scene of the movie where it describes the plight of the Israelites, but then says “God had not forgotten them.” There were many moments through the film where my own faith supplement my interpretation of the dialogue and the events.

        • MarcAlcan

          The question is whether that tiny redeeming value overrides the rest of the rubbish.

  • imabitterclinger2

    Atheists + Biblical Movies= Bad movies that lack theology, awe, miracles, and wonder.

  • Ruth Rocker

    After seeing the ads, I don’t understand why anyone, Christian, Jew or atheist, would actually want to pay to sit through what is obviously dreck of the first order. This is not even worth watching when it comes to HBO, et. al.

  • MarcAlcan

    Is a vote being taken?
    I say Golden Bull.

  • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

    Jaded appetites need intense stimuli. I would suggest reading Father Faber’s ‘Self Deceit’ in the book Spiritual Conferences. You will find a dozen things wrong with P of C.

  • bestreviewisyourownreview

    I watched NOAH, I didn’t like it.
    I watched EXODUS… I like it and left the theatre more connected with my FAITH and GOD.
    I still encourage my fellow Catholics to watch this film.
    You can review it for yourself, you know how FAITH is…
    “Sometimes HE who says they have it… are the 1st one’s to throw the STONES and mock other’s people’s BELIEF.”

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