Board the ark and brace yourselves for a natural disaster more disturbing than Evan Almighty, because the trailer for Darren Aronofsky’s Noah has just hit the internet.
Based on the biblical tale, Noah follows the titular Patriarch (Russell Crowe), a man who sees visions of the end of the world in a giant flood. Noah attempts to convince his people of the oncoming catastrophe, but he is cast out by his village (lead by Ray Winstone) for his “crazed rants” along with the rest of his family. Said family, which includes his grandfather (Anthony Hopkins), his wife (Jennifer Connelly), his sons (Logan Lerman and Douglas Booth) and his adopted daughter (Emma Watson), must now fend for themselves in the wilderness, where Noah seeks to build his ark and save his family (along with an animal or two… of every kind) from the flood. The trailer can be viewed below;
Now, I’m not a religious man myself. Most of my biblical knowledge comes from Veggie Tales and The Prince of Egypt. However, I (like most) am familiar with the story of Noah and his ark, which is why I questioned Aronofsky’s initial interest in the biblical tale. Aside from the obvious spectacle of the flood, I wondered what drew him and the all star cast to this project story. Then this trailer comes long and it hits me; this totally fits as material for Aronofsky to cover.
I can hear a few readers now (unless those are just the voices in my head) crying out “But Thomas, this is certainly a change of pace for the man behind Black Swan and Requiem for a Dream!” Sure, the fact that it’s a biblical epic with heavy special effects might seem like something totally out of Aronofsky’s wheelhouse at face value. However, the trailer gives hints of themes familiar to the director’s earlier works; visions, question of sanity, our main character being outcasted from society, mad obsession, etc. Aronofsky appears to be taking these themes he loves to explore and applying them to a story that is both universally recognizable and palpable material for a huge blockbuster. Who’s to say that the struggles of Noah has with his visions can’t parallel Nina’s struggles with her psychotic breakdown in Black Swan? Or that the exile of Noah and his family won’t mirror Randy “The Ram” Robinson’s displacement from the modern world in The Wrestler? Or that eventual rebirth of the world won’t recall the reincarnations of Thomas in The Fountain? Maybe I’m reading a bit too much into this, but I can see the familiar signs with scenes like the one of Ray Winestone casting the Noah family out or Noah waking up from a haunting vision.
On a more trailer specific note, it looks as if the budget is all there on the screen. The expansive flood destruction, plentiful variety of animals and massive size of the ark all give the film this grand sense of scale. Plus, the performers seem like they’re giving it their all, particularly Russell Crowe, Anthony Hopkins and Ray Winestone in any of the scenes where they’re confronting each other. They don’t seem like subtle performances, but they’re performances that fit the giant nature of this end/rebirth of the world story. I may not be a religious man, but I can appreciate a story with the appropriate amount of powerful steaks and emotional turmoil, which seems to be present in the trailer. So, if it wasn’t obvious before, I’m fully onboard with seeing this latest vision from Darren Aronofsky come to life.
But what do you all think? Is this destined to be the new Ten Commandments or will it be lost in the flood? Post your thoughts in the comments below.