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ExoDUS: Gods and Kings (Movie Review)

By Bridget Campos, 12/23/2014

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Renowned director, Ridley Scott, gives his own interpretation on a classic biblical story


Spoilers throughout this review 


Considered to be one of the most popular stories ever told in the book of Exodus; the ancient story entails the prophet Moses being sent by God to demand that Pharaoh (the King of Egypt) release the Israelites from captivity so they could go to their homeland. Due to Pharaoh’s haughtiness, by
not wanting the slaves to leave, the land of Egypt is affected by 10 plagues, but spares God’s people from harm. It is not until the last plague (the one being the death of every Egyptian’s firstborn son) that the king releases the Israelites from captivity. Pharaoh later on has a change of heart and attempts to reclaim his former slaves from Moses, only to be defeated by God. 


Over the decades, many movies, whether on television or film, have retold this story several times, but of course each one has its own interpretation of the biblical account. Exodus: Gods and Kings
focuses more on violent battle scenes and less on biblical accuracy, unlike the classic 1956 film, Ten Commandments, does. Some historical scholars might not help but point this out in Exodus’ story line.


Overall the movie is good, but you couldn’t help but notice Exodus trying to use scientific explanations to the prophetic events happening to the Egyptians. Like when the high priestess and prophet try explaining to Egyptian Pharaoh, Ramesses, (played by Joel Edgerton) that the earth’s ecosystem is the real cause of these “plagues” and not divine prophecy. However, there is a thin line between portraying
biblical accounts and adding scientific elements to the story. A prime example of this is portrayed in ending of Exodus when the Israelites have to cross the Red Sea. Instead of Moses (played by Christian Bale) parting the sea (like the old testament states), Exodus has an asteroid that lands several miles away, causing a tsunami-like effect on the sea, retracting the water enough for the Israelites to cross over it. Only hours later the water comes flooding back, killing Ramesses’ chariot army. 


Another part of Exodus that most will find difficult to understand is why a young boy is used as a
representation of God when communicating with Moses on how to direct the Israelites out of Egypt.
And, not to mention, after the Red Sea rescinds back to its original state, somehow only Moses and Ramesses survive millions of tons of water crushing them and are just washed up ashore, unharmed. These negative and downright confusing elements really take away from Exodus not being considered a great film. But if you are more into action, including great special effects, and less of a stickler on biblical accuracies than you will enjoy this film. Especially if you watch it in 3D. 


‘Exodus: Gods and Kings’ also stars Ben Kingsley, Sigourney Weaver, and John Turturro.


The film is rated PG-13, and contains violence, including battle sequences and intense images 


Reviewer's Rating : 3 1/2 out of 5