Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Noah epic awash in flood of controversy for green agenda and taking liberties with Bible

It is truly a Hollywood epic of biblical proportions, the original disaster story of the man chosen by God to undertake the greatest rescue in history before an apocalyptic flood engulfs the world. But even before it opens in America this week and Britain on April 4, Noah, a $130 million blockbuster with Russell Crowe in the lead role, is already awash in a turbulent sea of controversy. The film, packed with special effects based around a massive replica ark built in Long Island near New York, also stars Sir Anthony Hopkins as Methuselah and Emma Watson, the Harry Potter actress, as Noah's adopted daughter. Noah's director Darren Aronofsky, a self-described atheist who made the Oscar-nominated hit The Black Swan, has described the movie as is "the least biblical biblical film ever made" and called Noah "the first environmentalist". According to one early review, the name "God" is not actually spoken at any stage. Now, amid a wave of criticism from some Christian groups about its loose interpretation of a sacred script, the Paramount studio has taken the unusual step of issuing an "explanatory message" to accompany marketing material. It notes that while the film is "inspired by the story of Noah... artistic licence has been taken". And it adds, for anyone unclear about the source material: "The biblical story of Noah can be found in the book of Genesis." It has also highlighted praise for the film by some Christian leaders. After advance test screenings, there were complaints that the film did not adhere strictly enough to the Old Testament verses and portrays Noah as an environmental crusader to deliver a secular ecological doomsday message. "The insertion of the extremist environmental agenda is a problem," said Jerry Johnson, president of the National Religious Broadcasters group. Brian Godawa, a Hollywood screenwriter and commentator on Christian issues, was one of the first to raise religious alarms after seeing an early version of the script. In an article titled Darren Aronofsky's Noah: Environmentalist Wacko, he said the director transformed a scriptural story into "environmental paganism" by blaming the Great Flood on man's "disrespect" for the environment...more

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