[Noah Opens in Theaters Tomorrow]
There’s nothing quite so helpful as a fatwa and threats of a Christian boycott to create buzz in advance of a new movie.
“Noah,” scheduled for its U.S. release on March 28, has become such a target. The United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain have banned the movie because it depicts a prophet, which, as Danish cartoonists will attest, isn’t the peachiest of ideas in certain circles.
Even here in the land of religious tolerance, the National Religious Broadcasters threatened to boycott the film unless Paramount, the film’s distributor and co-financier with New Regency, issued a disclaimer that the movie isn’t a literal interpretation of the Genesis story.
Alas, under pressure, Paramount altered its advertising to say the movie was “inspired” by the Bible story and is not the Bible story.
Note the frequent use of the word “movie” in the preceding paragraphs. This is because “Noah” is a movie. It is not a sermon or a call to prayer. It cost $130 million to make and is intended to entertain, inspire and — bear with me, I know this is crazy — make money. It does not presume to encourage religious conversion, disrespect a prophet or evangelize a snake, though it does glorify virtue in the highest.
I recently viewed the film and can confidently report the following: If you liked “Braveheart,” “Gladiator,” “Star Wars,” “The Lord of the Rings,” “Indiana Jones” or “Titanic,” you will like “Noah.” If you liked two or more of the above, you will love “Noah.” Your enjoyment increases exponentially with each movie checked above, though I should warn that “Titanic” made the cut for only one reason, the major difference between it and “Noah” being obvious. “Noah” also includes the essential love story or two, without which no story floats.
Personally, I thought the trailer looked bland and dark and the music uninspired. I hope my impressions are wrong. The Washington Post is left-wing Darwin loving newspaper, so this is probably good news Noah is getting a good review.