Exodus: a cinematographic holy land

Exodus Gods and kings
Exodus Gods and kings

The myth of Moses, being rewritten through the religion’s American and contemporary vision of Ridley Scott, suffers from a serious lack of creativity. Even though the script doesn’t surprise by relying on a faithful rewriting of the initial tale, Christian Bale’s interpretation of a tortured and fragile Moses is quite convincing. A young man decides to bring the kingdom of his royal brother to his knees in order to set Hebrew people free.

After being banned from the city by his own brother, the divine revelation appears to Moses as he became a peasant. God’s allegory as a little boy can be surprisingly refreshing, however the director’s use of Christianity’s tradition can sometimes appear as the realization of a spoiled child’s wishes. The Nature’s overcoming of men, while being very impressive, is turning into a simple slaughter instead of a religious punishment as firstly supposed to. The scene where a children’s massacre is being formed strongly rephrases the definition of fairness. However it seems like religion is either represented by destruction or madness.

Scott’s vision of Ramses, Egypt’s Pharaoh, is being appreciated through a bipolar allegory of Power. The character remains endearing as if his relationship with his adopted brother was the only piece of humanity he could hold on to. Ramses is turned into a powerless witness of the chaos he created in the first place.

The inner power of the image resides in its ability to exploit a story in order to create new emotions. There is here an excess of emotional scenes and songs overcoming the value of the movie’s issues. Aesthetically speaking, Exodus is not a piece of art: the director doesn’t take as much risk as he could have taken with the theme of religion in cinema. The North American cinema might not be as detached as it could be from the influence of the founding principles on which religion is based. Yet Moses himself is not entirely convinced of the benefits of following an imperishable faith.

    Exodus: Gods and King’s, by Ridley Scott (2014)


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