Exodus: Gods, Kings and inaccuracies

16 January 2015

IT is surprising that no radical Christian organisation hacked Scott Free Productions to protest what one can only describe as intentional misinterpretations in Exodus: Gods and Kings.

It goes without saying that Ridley Scott is one of the best and most ingenious directors of all time. His was the brilliant mind that brought us Alien, The Blade Runner and Prometheus, to name a few.

Although moviemakers have told the story of Moses countless times through films, one could not help but feel excited when hearing that Scott would direct another one. He has always been visually captivating.

However, nothing could have prepared me for the biggest shock of my life – a shock that would most certainly have forced any Christian fundamentalist to storm out in disgust, after molesting the screen with their bodily fluids.

Make no mistake; Scott delivered a brilliant motion picture. The actors brought their A-game and the graphics were breathtaking; he did not falter. Had this film been based on an original script, there would have been nothing but praise for Scott.

Unfortunately, he based the film on one of the greatest biblical figures, or so my Sunday School teacher had us believe. Yes, I missed a few classes, but surely, this was not how the story went, or was this the version I missed?

My first quarrel with Scott is the fact that Caucasian actors played all the leading roles. We all love Christian Bale, but making a movie in 2014 with an all white leading cast is insulting.

I refuse to accept that no black actors exist that could have sparked the same interest that Bale and fellow actors did.

Will Smith, Denzel Washington, Laurence Fishburne, Djimon Hounsou, Halle Berry, Angela Basset or Rosario Dawson and those are just from the top of my head.

This confirms yet again that black actors in Hollywood still take a back seat to their Caucasian counterparts.

As if that was not bad enough, they had an English accent, or at least it sounded like it was English.

Personally, I would have preferred to hear some African and Middle Eastern influences in the way they spoke. If you’re not going to make an effort to make something as historically accurate as possible, don’t do it

Imagine if someone made a movie of JFK’s assassination and made the assassin a boom box carrying thug with superman’s powers, because this is what I equate it to.

Someone who has never heard or read the story of Moses will surely come away convinced that he was mentally ill.

Either he suffered from the prolonged effects of concussion or maybe the mudslide (which by the way I don’t remember ever hearing about in Sunday School) somehow triggered his schizophrenia.

Exodus: Gods and Kings portrayed Moses as a madman who saw hallucinations of an angry, vindictive and vengeful little boy who claimed to be God; a God willing to sacrifice his own people to make sure Ramses set them free.

But that wasn’t enough for Scott, who went on to sneak in a “scientific” explanation for the plagues of Egypt. The plagues were merely a chain reaction set off by crocodiles that went berserk and began attacking humans and each other.

The parting of the Red Sea was explained away by a meteor somehow crashing into the sea, causing it to drain, and fill up again just as the Egyptians were about to catch up with the Israelites.

I distinctly remember Madam What’s-her-face saying that Moses parted the sea with his staff, but not that it nearly drowned him in the process.

Honestly, I am convinced that this Moses was not the same one in the bible, but rather another one from Hollywood who is as mad as the day is long, and maybe a little suicidal.

Minus all the inaccuracies, it made for a great watch; it had just the right amount of thrill as some of Scott’s best blockbusters.

If you think you can sit through it without having mini-strokes and fits where you yell “blasphemy” at the screen, I suggest you do yourself a favour and watch it.

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