I've had a few people ask me if I have read or knew anything about the new Ridley Scott film Exodus Gods and Kings. Well New Years Eve I pulled myself out of bed as I have been sick this week and went to see that movie with my fiance. So I wanted to give my own review of the movie in the hope that helps those who are interested in seeing it or not. You know those people who often get mad at movies based on books because the director changes something or leaves something out, and then when you read the book you can admit see the differences between the two, but it doesn't ruin the movie for you? That's what its like to watch Exodus Gods and Kings. Let me be clear this movie is not like the recent Noah movie that came out in that it is so different that it really is unfaithful to the biblical message, but Exodus Gods and Kings(which from this point will be known as EGAK) gets the overall story correct while getting many of the biblical details wrong. The biggest of these is when God first calls Moses. (spoiler alert) God tells Moses that he needs a general to free his people. Moses then goes and trains the Hebrews to fight and we get your standard training montage. However God then comments to Moses that his way is taking too long and then God starts with the plagues. In the biblical account God calls Moses to be a messenger no a general and God is with Moses from the beginning rather than letting Moses try his way then getting impatient and doing it his way. This is probably the biggest change from the biblical account and the movie. The question that you may be asking at this point is, "so does this mean I should not watch the movie?" To answer that I would say use your discernment. If it bothers that Ridley Scott has strayed that far from the biblical account then I would say don't see the movie. For me while I did role my eyes at this and commented on it, it did no destroy the movie for me, nor did it hinder the over all message which is God saving his people, and showing Egypt that God is God. There are many details that this movie gets wrong, but I believe they get enough right to show what the passage is about. I would classify this movie as historical fiction. Much akin to the Patriot staring Mel Gibson. There are some things that are right, but other things are changed for movie purposes. There are some things that this movie did that I liked. The first is I liked how big it showed the Hebrews to be. Often in my mind when I think about Exodus I picture maybe 200 people or so, but the Hebrews were a great tribe by this point and EGAK did a good job demonstrating that. What I also liked was the global context this movie brought. In the movie the Egyptians are talking about the Hittites and some of the other tribes in the land of Canaan. This added a global context which other movies have left out. I liked that because it showed that this was a real world that was connected and it showed Egypt's power. I also liked how they the movie addressed issues brought against God nowadays, for example the idea of God being a child killer. There is also one more point that I liked in this movie and if you don't want the movie spoiled please don't read this. There is a point when Moses is talking with God and God shows his anger about the Egyptians worshiping false Gods and talks about how he wants them down on their knees. While there is no Biblical account in Exodus, the idea of God having wrath over his creation worshiping statues instead of Him is Biblical and it showed a side of God that has kinda been forgotten in modern world. I also liked the interaction between Moses and God and I felt that while all these encounters did not follow the letter of the Bible, in many ways they captured the spirit of it. The last thing I really liked in this movie is when Moses gives a speech to the Hebrews and all he pretty much says is don't be afraid God is with us. The movie treats this with its proper respect and inspiration because really if God is for us then who could stand against us? So I liked how just the words God is with us are shown to be powerful words indeed. From a Christian standpoint I would say that EGAK does a good job of capturing the spirit of the book of Exodus but a poor of keeping to the details. One should understand that this film is going to get certain details wrong and so it would perhaps be wise to read through Exodus before or after seeing this movie. Having said that I found the Movie to be entertaining and well acted. For it being a 2 and half hours long movie I never really felt it's length. The special effects on the plagues and the parting of the Red Sea where well done. There are some violent scenes in this movie as it is really trying to capture how these plagues effected the Egyptians. Parents should understand that there are some graphic scenes and perhaps should be cautious to take young children to see it. I'm not sure who this movie was really made for so its hard to say to whom I should recommend it to. All I will say is that for entertaining movies based on the Bible you can do a lot worse than Exodus Gods and Kings. If you have seen the movie let me know what you thought about it in the comments. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Here you can read various thoughts and discussions that come from the mind of our Pastor