Two quick new items via Deadline, both of which happen to concern Oscar-nominated foreign-film makers who are now going to direct films with a biblical element.
The chronological Noah: an illustrated integration of the three origin stories in Darren Aronofsky’s film
There are two Creation stories in Genesis, and the details don’t always mesh. Likewise, there are three origin stories in Darren Aronofsky’s Noah — the opening prologue, the story of the Watchers told by Og, and the story of Creation and the Fall told by Noah — and the details there don’t always fit together all that comfortably, either.
Films, children’s books and other retellings of the Creation story sometimes integrate the two Genesis stories by omitting some details and rearranging the rest, so that, for example, Adam names the animals and Eve is taken from Adam’s rib (a la Genesis 2) before God tells the man and woman to be fruitful and multiply (a la Genesis 1).
Similarly, I thought it might be fun to take the three origin stories in Noah and weave them together into a single narrative that shows the creation and fall of the Watchers and early humans together. The screencaps below are only a sampling of the images from these sequences, but I have kept every word that accompanied them.
Methuselah, who was recently played by Anthony Hopkins in Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, wasn’t the only man in the Bible who lived to be over 900 years old. But he lived at least a few years longer than everyone else, so his name has become synonymous with extreme old age.
No one ever tells stories about Seth, Enosh, Kenan or Jared — all of whom lived to be over 900 years old as well — and the fact that Adam and Noah lived to be that old is generally forgotten in films about those characters. It is Methuselah that everyone remembers, simply because he lived longer than any of the rest of them.
For one thing, they have generally been made by the same creative team, including composer Clint Mansell (who has scored all six of Aronofsky’s films), cinematographer Matthew Libatique (who has shot all of Aronofsky’s films except for The Wrestler) and a number of recurring actors (such as Jennifer Connelly, Ellen Burstyn and especially Mark Margolis).
But the films also have some thematic overlaps. As I mentioned in my review of Noah for Books & Culture, Aronofsky films often dwell on the notion that it is impossible to touch perfection and survive. They also tend to revolve around characters who are obsessed with something, often to the characters’ detriment. And more often than not, they tend to make references to the Bible, some more pronounced than others.
And that brings us to Noah. When the film came out, a number of critics (such as The Playlist’s Drew Taylor) noted that it had some striking things in common with The Fountain in particular. But Noah actually harks back — visually and thematically — to pretty much all of Aronofsky’s earlier films to one degree or another.
The Noah Blu-Ray is here — and with it, a bunch of behind-the-scenes stuff that we have never seen before. Here are some quick notes on the bonus features.
First, a reminder that different editions of the film come with different bonus features.
As far as I know, seven bonus features have been released one way or another so far, and all of them are available on the “exclusive” Target edition of the Blu-Ray. (The bilingual packaging on the disc I bought here in Canada listed only six bonus features, but the actual disc had all seven.) But only three of them are available on the Blu-Ray that is available everywhere else.
Also, three bonus features are apparently included if you purchase the film directly from iTunes (if you use iTunes to get the free “digital copy” that comes with your disc, you won’t get any bonus features, just the film), but one of the iTunes bonus features is actually from the Target disc and not from the regular Blu-Ray.
Confused yet? I’ll try to sort it all out below.