Biblical epic Exodus: Gods and Kings stars Christian Bale as Moses who, as the film opens, fights alongside his brother Ramses (a shaved-headed Joel Edgerton), to help defend Egypt, which is ruled by their father, Seti (John Turturro). During battle, Moses saves Ramses life, causing Ramses to fear that his brother will one day be King because it fits with a prophecy handed down by one of Seti's trusted spiritualists. Soon after Seti's death, Moses, who is actually Jewish and not Egyptian, is banished. However, he becomes the leader of the Jewish people and leads a rebellion, with the help of a wrathful God, against that Egyptians..
The casting of European actors may not be as historically inaccurate as some have claimed. Northern Africa is separated from the rest of the continent by the Sahara Desert. As a result, those nations have more in common culturally with the Middle East and Europe than with Africa. One early race of Pharaohs was the Hyksos who, like the Jews, were a Semitic people. The Ptolemaic line of Pharoahs, which included Cleopatra, were of Macedonian descent. Both regions have inhabitants noted for their lightness of skin. See more »
In the wedding scene, a beautiful cactus can be seen. Cacti did not exist in Egypt until few hundred years ago. See more »
Did you do what you said?
What did I say?
That you would trade your faith to keep me.
Good. You may need it more than ever.
[whole of Israel gathered behind him]
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Scott's visually stunning epic is an emotionless event
All creative persons/artists go through a creative funk, it's just part and parcel of the business they're in. Whether it be a writer who suffers from the dreaded writers block, an actor that can't seem to buy a hit or a painter that can't seem to replicate the images in their heads, the creative lulls affect all. Famed British director Ridley Scott, the visionary master behind such classics as Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator has found himself in one of these creative dead zones, but the most telling thing about his time in this lowly state is that his been there for the better part of a decade and after witnessing his new cashed up epic Exodus, it seems he is destined to remain there for the foreseeable future. Exodus is one of the most telling examples of storytelling mediocrity overshadowing impeccable production values that I've ever seen and it would be hard for anyone to argue against the pure visual value present on screen in what is a clearly lavishly splurged upon epic. From monuments through to the slums of the slave's right down to the extra clad streets, Exodus brims to life with a detailed and often incredible visual palette. While the wonders of the on screen production will consistently make you look twice, there seems like such little point to an exercise like this when all is surrounded by a script that never allows us in, alongside Scott directing proceedings like a man that wants to show off but not engage, direction more concerned with how to spectacularly kill of horses than making the characters and story come to life. Much has been made in the media of late surrounding the casting of actors in Exodus but more importantly to movie goers it's important to know just how tame the acting turns are here. Christian Bale makes for a watchable yet not entirely memorable Moses, his incarnation has moments of brief humanity but he feels more a caricature than a living breathing embodiment of one of the Bibles most well-known figures, we feel tiny bits of the weight Moses had on his shoulders, yet our care towards him remains dangerously low. On the other end of the spectrum Australian Joel Edgerton (in perhaps his biggest Hollywood gig yet) fails to deliver on what should've been a glorious big screen villain in the form of Rhamses. All eyeliner and grizzled looks, Edgerton fails to convince in his role and it feels from the get go that sadly he may've been miscast much like John Turturoo's Seti, Aaron Paul's Joshua and Ben Kinglsey's Nun, even the usually scene stealing Ben Mendelsohn as Hegep fails to make much of a mark which leaves the film but a few genuine moments of memorability, that being all largely related to the onset of the plagues. Impressive visuals, stunning sets and some genuinely wow inducing moments concerning the plagues aren't enough to save this emotionally void epic from a giant wave of the mundane. Scott sure knows how to conduct his production department and his sweeping camera sure can capture some outstanding action but the one time storyteller has lost sight of how to portray his characters, how to play out a story and Exodus looks set to become another Scott failure that looks likely to underwhelm audiences as well as Box Office's the world over. 2 shades of eyeliner out of 5
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