After a short split prologue showing riches as the root of evil in ancient and modern times, the film settles into 1914 France, where the Orient Express is about to be wrecked when a bridge washes out. Among those on board are Al and Travis, Americans who are traveling Europe spending Travis' money, and Marie, a German girl. The boys save Marie after the wreck and Travis falls in love with her. When World War I breaks out Al wants to enlist, but Travis can't, feeling loyal to Marie, a German. By 1917 Al has enlisted, and Travis follows him shortly after marrying Marie. Accused of being a German spy by a Russian agent, she is sentenced to die but is recognized by Travis, who is part of the firing squad. The town they are in is shelled and they are all trapped underground, during which a minister makes a lengthy parallel to ancient times when the King of Akkad persecuted his subjects and defied Jehovah, who finally sends a flood to wipe out mankind, except for Noah and his family, whom ... Written by
Ron Kerrigan <,email@example.com>
After God destroys civilization in The Great Flood, biblical patriarch Paul McAllister (as Noah) thanks the Supreme Being for a successful trip. God's chosen captain, some selected wives, and pairs of the planet Earth's animals rode out the storm in "Noah's Ark". Alas, men immediately returned to their wicked ways - and the whole exercise was for naught. Events quickly lead up to The Great War (aka World War I), wherein blood replaces the flood. Jesus Christ notwithstanding, beautiful blonde Dolores Costello (as Marie) is sentenced to die on a cross, as a spy for her German brethren...
Hunky husband George O'Brien (as Travis) must somehow save her!
With Ms. Costello in dire straits, we flashback to tell the story of "Noah's Art" that ended in the film's opening prologue. In the Old Testament past, ever-lovely Costello (as Miriam) is led to be sacrificed as a virgin. While we wonder how a woman resembling Costello managed to remain a virgin, Mr. O'Brien (as Japheth) is blinded and put to work at a treadmill...
Only a miracle will save him!
The juxtaposition of "The Flood" and "The Blood" draws uncomfortable parallels; probably, filmmaker Darryl F. Zanuck didn't intend to imply God caused both. This is another film inspired by D.W. Griffith's colossal "Intolerance" (1916), but executed on the relatively smaller epic scale Cecil B. DeMille used in his original silent version of "The Ten Commandments" (1923). Again, we have "Biblical" and "Modern" stories being told, and not all too well. Still, the production values and close-ups are terrific. Some of the talking parts have been restored, but the color sequences are apparently lost.
******* Noah's Ark (11/1/28) Michael Curtiz ~ Dolores Costello, George O'Brien, Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams, Noah Beery
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