Noah: The Movie

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shnarkle
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Noah: The Movie

Post #1

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The recent rendering in film of the story of Noah evidently uses a number of sources from antiquity in developing one of its themes, namely the problem of Ham and his predicament which results in him seeing "the nakedness of his father". The movie develops this theme quite well until it completely drops the ball by showing Noah passed out drunk.

Perhaps the makers of this film didn't think the religious communities watching their film would be able to handle what really happened. Perhaps they just missed it completely as well. I don't know. It certainly isn't beyond the limits of the censors so I don't know which it might be.

For those who may be unaware of the context:

"And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: 21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without. 23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness. 24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him. 25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren."

Usually the question is, "Why did Noah curse Canaan?" The answer is that Canaan was the product of Ham's illicit relationship with his mother. The reason for this is that "the nakedness of their father" is their mother. According to Leviticus 18:8 "The nakedness of thy father's wife shalt thou not uncover: it is thy father's nakedness." To uncover means essentially to engage in sexual relations.

So my question is why would the makers of this film develop this theme of Ham's dilemma in finding a wife, and rearing a family and then just seem to drop not only the logical conclusion, but the conclusion which the texts seem to indicate?

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Re: Noah: The Movie

Post #11

Post by bluethread »

shnarkle wrote: [Replying to bluethread]

The problem with this view is that when Noach awoke he cursed Canaan. How could he have known his grandson's name or even if this event was going to result in a child. The reason I think that Noach cursed Canaan and not Ham is that when one is cursed it reflects poorly on the parent, which in this case would be himself.

shnarkle: An interesting interpretation. However, another idea promoted by historians is that these stories are a sort of short hand account of historical events. So Noah discovers what has happened. He may have cursed Canaan before he knew his name, or waited till he knew his name, waited till Canaan was born, etc. Another way of looking at it is similar in that Noah may stand for a community and Ham for a descendant community that isn't as productive or they're depraved etc., or perhaps as the curse suggests they were enslaved by one of the other tribes etc. One of the more well known examples from the bible is the story of Abraham. Historians claim that this refers to Abraham or an Abrahamic community who discontinued sacrificing their first born sons and began sacrificing their livestock.
This kind of exegesis undermines any argument. One need not believe in a literal Noach, but the more symbolism one applies to the text, the weaker the argument. Just as in the validation of factual events, one must also show that any symbolism is justified by historical, grammatical or cultural factors.

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Post #12

Post by OnceConvinced »

shnarkle wrote: shnarkle: Christians could care less. Jews might have a problem with it though, especially the orthodox. However, probably the most likely to be offended would be scholars, but then they aren't really big movie goers. Regardless, I doubt they'd lose millions. More than likely they'd gain millions from the R rated crowd. Either
I've never heard any Jews opinions on it, but I've heard plenty of Christians complaining about the movie. In fact I would say it would be the Jews who are less likely to care because the modern Jew seems to acknowledge that the Noah's Ark story may be fictional whereas the Christians tend to believe it's literal history and hate it when you deviate in any way from the original story. Every Christian I've told about the move was disgusted to learn there was golem's in it. How dare they mess with the biblical account?

I would think that if you're gonna make a biblical movie, one of your main target audiences is gonna be Christians. Who do you think these guys were targeting for their audience?
shnarkle wrote: shnarkle: It's no worse than what Disney has on Saturday morning for the little tykes.
I guess I can only really go by what I used to see in the 70s when I watched the Wonderful World of Disney, but I'm yet to see a Disney movie that includes a mother and her son getting it on.

Society and its morals evolve and will continue to evolve. The bible however remains the same and just requires more and more apologetics and claims of "metaphors" and "symbolism" to justify it.

Prayer is like rubbing an old bottle and hoping that a genie will pop out and grant you three wishes.

There is much about this world that is mind boggling and impressive, but I see no need whatsoever to put it down to magical super powered beings.


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Re: Noah: The Movie

Post #13

Post by shnarkle »

[Replying to post 11 by bluethread]


This kind of exegesis undermines any argument.

shnarkle: It isn't exegesis. It's eisegesis, and it doesn't undermine your argument. It's just that this historical interpretation spotlights that the text states that "when" Noah knew what had happened he cursed Canaan. We don't know for sure that when he came to from his bender that he knew what had happened. We just know that he came to prior to figuring out what happened. We also know that he cursed Canaan after he knew what had happened, but it doesn't state that it was immediately after he figured this out. It isn't even clear that he cursed Canaan by name. The speaker only states that Canaan was cursed by Noah. So we have the sequence of events, and while the narrative seems to suggest that all of these events took place all at once, there is evidence to suggest that this may not be the case especially if "the nakedness of your father is your mother".
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One need not believe in a literal Noach,

shnarkle: This is irrelevant. I never suggested that belief was necessary to engage in this discussion.
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but the more symbolism one applies to the text, the weaker the argument.

shnarkle: I'm not applying symbolism. There is no symbolism evident in this particular text. One doesn't apply symbolism when it isn't evident.
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Just as in the validation of factual events, one must also show that any symbolism is justified by historical, grammatical or cultural factors.

shnarkle: Yes and no, one needs to recognize the symbol so cultural considerations could come into play. Symbolism is justified by the evidence of the figure Symbol itself. Figurative speech is an intentional violation of the laws of language. I'm not sure of any historical connection that is required.

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Post #14

Post by shnarkle »

[Replying to post 12 by OnceConvinced]

I've heard plenty of Christians complaining about the movie. In fact I would say it would be the Jews who are less likely to care because the modern Jew seems to acknowledge that the Noah's Ark story may be fictional whereas the Christians tend to believe it's literal history and hate it when you deviate in any way from the original story.

shnarkle: I've heard one Christian complain, but he was complaining about the environmental theme of the movie.
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Every Christian I've told about the move was disgusted to learn there was golem's in it. How dare they mess with the biblical account?

shnarkle: How dare they mess with their interpretation of the biblical account. There are also more accounts of this than just the biblical one.
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I would think that if you're gonna make a biblical movie, one of your main target audiences is gonna be Christians. Who do you think these guys were targeting for their audience?

shnarkle; As many people as possible. Hollywood is only recently beginning to target Christians possibly due to the numerous movies that have been coming out lately that are being released by Christian production companies. The production value as well as the quality of the acting, set design etc. has been steadily improving to the point that they might be giving Hollywood a run for its money. That's why I don't see why Hollywood wouldn't just put out a normal Hollywood movie with its normal R rated content. I'm not claiming that I don't understand why they didn't SHOW what happened, but why they abruptly dropped that theme.
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shnarkle wrote:

shnarkle: It's no worse than what Disney has on Saturday morning for the little tykes.


I guess I can only really go by what I used to see in the 70s when I watched the Wonderful World of Disney, but I'm yet to see a Disney movie that includes a mother and her son getting it on.

shnarkle: See above. Classic Walt Disney movies routinely contained witchcraft, sorcery, matricide, orphaned children and animals etc.

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Post #15

Post by OnceConvinced »

shnarkle wrote: I've heard one Christian complain, but he was complaining about the environmental theme of the movie.
Actually if you look at Wikepedia you will see that it was the Christians that bad mouthed it. The one Jewish response was very positive.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noah_(2014 ... h_response
shnarkle wrote: See above. Classic Walt Disney movies routinely contained witchcraft, sorcery, matricide, orphaned children and animals etc.
What's so controversial about orphaned children and animals? And which one has matricide?

Christians are quite happy to demonize minority groups like witches. They don't care that what Hollywood portrays misrepresents real witches. However the incest in the bible is a very embarrassing thing for Christians. It's not something they want included in their movies and stories and it never has been in my experience. The embarrassing stuff like incest ALWAYS gets left out. And I've been in churches most of my life, so I know this. Not once have I ever heard a sermon preached on that part of the Noah's Ark story.

Having been brought up in a Christian home, I heard the Noah story many many times, but never once was the part of Noah getting drunk ever included in any of them. It's always left out, because for one thing it's not appropriate for children and another thing, it's embarrassing for Christians because it then shows that Noah and his family were no more righteous than the people who God drowned.

I also read the story many times from the actual bible itself too but never remember reading the bit about the drunkedness. I can only presume I glossed over it. Christians tend to do that with the nasty stuff.

Incest is such a controversial topic and I'll bet you anything they didn't include it because A) It's way too controversial and would have people complaining about it being included, B) it would increase the movie to an R16 and I bet any movie company doing a biblical movie would not want that, especially if they wanted Christian and child audiences. And after all it's Noah's Ark. Noah's Ark pretty much is a child's story. Adding in an incest scene would be like including "Horny Smurf" in a Smurf movie.

Anyway, (Jennifer Connelly aside) who would want to see Noah's wife getting it on with her son anyway? I'm reminded of the Peter Jackson movie, Lovely Bones. Some people complained because they never showed the actual child rape scene in it. What sort of people are those who want to see a child rape scene in a movie? Even Peter Jackson said, in response to those people, "Why would you even want to see that scene?" I would think the same questions would have to be asked of an incest scene in Noah's Ark. Why would you even want it there?

Society and its morals evolve and will continue to evolve. The bible however remains the same and just requires more and more apologetics and claims of "metaphors" and "symbolism" to justify it.

Prayer is like rubbing an old bottle and hoping that a genie will pop out and grant you three wishes.

There is much about this world that is mind boggling and impressive, but I see no need whatsoever to put it down to magical super powered beings.


Check out my website: Recker's World of Fantasy

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Post #16

Post by shnarkle »

[Replying to OnceConvinced]

who would want to see Noah's wife getting it on with her son anyway? I'm reminded of the Peter Jackson movie, Lovely Bones. Some people complained because they never showed the actual child rape scene in it. What sort of people are those who want to see a child rape scene in a movie? Even Peter Jackson said, in response to those people, "Why would you even want to see that scene?" I would think the same questions would have to be asked of an incest scene in Noah's Ark. Why would you even want it there?

shnarkle: I never suggested that the movie should portray an incestuous sex scene. I merely posed the question as to why the theme that was brought up in the movie (as well as in other extra biblical texts) wasn't taken to the conclusion that the biblical texts suggest, e.g. "the nakedness of your father is your mother".

The theme of incest isn't something that Hollywood is afraid of in the first place. Some of the more notable examples are: The Empire Strikes Back, Back to the Future, The Devil's Advocate, EuroTrip, The House of Yes, Chinatown, etc. Then there's Rumor Has It where the audience is tricked into thinking that the lovemaking session between Kevin Costner and Jennifer Aniston isn't incestuous only to be tricked again into believing that it is after the fact. Then there's August: Osage County which just came out recently which seems to make incestuous relationships seem relatively benign in comparison to other unpleasant behavior.

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Re: Noah: The Movie

Post #17

Post by bluethread »

shnarkle wrote: shnarkle: It isn't exegesis. It's eisegesis, and it doesn't undermine your argument. It's just that this historical interpretation spotlights that the text states that "when" Noah knew what had happened he cursed Canaan. We don't know for sure that when he came to from his bender that he knew what had happened. We just know that he came to prior to figuring out what happened. We also know that he cursed Canaan after he knew what had happened, but it doesn't state that it was immediately after he figured this out. It isn't even clear that he cursed Canaan by name. The speaker only states that Canaan was cursed by Noah. So we have the sequence of events, and while the narrative seems to suggest that all of these events took place all at once, there is evidence to suggest that this may not be the case especially if "the nakedness of your father is your mother".
Well the passage reads, Said Cursed Canaan . . . Now, if you want to put a time gap before that, that is one thing. However, it seems clear to me that Noach knew Canaan's name when he said the curse.

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Re: Noah: The Movie

Post #18

Post by shnarkle »

[Replying to post 17 by bluethread]

A gap in time isn't really even necessary. One can curse someone else without stating or even knowing their name in the first place. As an example we have the case of Elizabeth blessing "the fruit of your womb". She has no idea what his name is going to be, but his doesn't negate the blessing.

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