On the Silver Screen

Apr 6, 2014 | Posted by in Movies

I have more than one film to talk about this week, quite a change from before.


One of the best known Bible stories brought to life by Darren Aronofsky in an interesting way that some might not expect. It seems that Aronofsky has wanted to make this film for 10 years or so and the success of Black Swan finally got him the credibility necessary to have the money thrown at him to get this made.

In general I liked this film, the visual imagery was stunning and the story holds together for the most part. Noah (Russell Crow) and his family are established as simple people who never take more from the land than they need, this is why God (or The Creator) decides in his infinite mercy not to drown them.

Noah starts to receive cryptic visions that give him the distinct idea that there is something that he is meant to do but he doesn’t quite know what that something is, in order to find out more information he goes to find his grandfather Methuselah (Anthony Hopkins) who helps him to have another vision indicating that he needs to build an Ark to save his family as well as a single male and female from every animal on Earth so that the evil can be washed away to let the Earth begin anew. I like how the film shows The Creator’s influence rather than have him be a booming voice in the sky, it was more effective this way and really gives the impression of an ethereal presence that’s beyond understanding.

Helping him to build the Ark are fallen angels in the form of rock monsters -I am genuinely not kidding here, a film about Noah has rock monsters in it- who are in charge of the heavy lifting and most of the construction work, so I suppose “help” actually means “does 90% of the work” in this case.

Naturally the time frame of the film is quite extensive since the construction takes a number of years to complete and it is not without complications. The primary antagonist comes in the form of Ray Winstone’s Tubal-cain who seeks to stop Noah from finishing his task. He kind of dips in and out of the narrative without seeming like too much of a threat.

Overall I enjoyed the film but mostly as a visual feast. I also have to give props for trying to combine religion and science/evolution into something that manages to factor in both schools of thought. The cast all did well with what they were given with Russell Crowe playing a nicely complex Noah. Anthony Hopkins and Ray Winstone were given comparatively little to do. Jennifer Connelly as Noah’s wife Naamey and Emma Watson as their adopted daughter Ila are both very good in their roles, both managing to bring ample humanity to their characters. Logan Lerman and Douglas Booth as Noah’s sons Ham and Shem aren’t given much to do and fade into the background much of the time. Definitely worth seeing this for the visual imagery alone, it definitely does seem Biblical in scale.

Muppets Most Wanted

After a successful -not quite- reboot Kermit and pals return in this off-beat adventure. I never have been a huge fan of The Muppets, that isn’t to say that I don’t like them I just never raved about them when I was younger so I’m kind of approaching this as a goofy comedy.

In that sense it works very well, the situations presented are suitably ridiculous and it does succeed in its self aware lunacy. The fact that nobody bats an eyelid at them taking a train all across Europe after starting in America being just one example.

The main story is that Kermit is being impersonated by an identical (except from a mole) felt frog named Constantine and he’s undermining The Muppets from within since they’re too stupid to realise that this guy isn’t their leader.

I really missed the presence of Amy Adams and Jason Segel here as they were so funny in the last one and I was hoping that they’d stick around the franchise for a while, especially since it took Jason Segel to ultimately bring it back. That being said, Ty Burrell and Tina Fey are excellent replacements who are both excellently hilarious in their roles. The weak link is unsurprising Ricky Gervais who still hasn’t realised that he’s just not funny any more. Any time he was on screen I cringed, he was that bad.

The story accomplishes what it sets out to do and the musical numbers are appropriately whimsical, it wasn’t as good as the last one but was still very funny. It’s definitely a very good kids film.


This was another one I saw this week, you can find a full review on Adam’s site here so show some love.