Gods of Egypt is a story about the God Horus and a mortal thief named Bek trying to take Egypt back from the God Set. In this story the Gods live among the mortals in Egypt, looking much the same as us but noticeably different with their much greater height and the fact they bleed gold – which by the way is quite pretty and makes the blood splatter scenes much more enjoyable.
Horus is about to be made King of All Egypt by his father Osiris when along comes uncle Set, who proceeds to kill Osiris, blind Horus and take over the world. Set starts making up His own rules, including one that says you have to pay in riches to pass into the Afterlife (the alternative being soul destruction). Poor humans are enslaved and Bek, one of those poor humans, steals the Eye of Horus back from Set and returns it to Horus, thus giving us the beginning of the story.
I really enjoyed this movie. It had some great special effects, it was action packed and it even had a nice bit of humour in it. The sets were beautiful, several times during the movie I literally wanted to move into my TV screen. Gorgeous pyramids, statues and pillars. Amazing greenery and gardens. The waterfalls were stunning. Yeh, it brought up, “I totally need to go to Egypt one day” feelings, even though I know it doesn’t look like that in real life.
The effects were cool, the way the Gods changed from human-looking to their metallic animal counterparts was interesting. And I have already mentioned the pretty blood splatters. This was the first time I have seen a movie that shows the idea of the Gods pulling the sun across the sky, and it was really well done, the view of this red red sun being pulled behind this “boat” was just beautiful.
Horus is played by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, better known as Jaime Lannister. The irony of him playing a God who is in an incestuous relationship with a Goddess who is, in some myths, his mother was not lost on me – though would be lost on those who don’t know any Egyptian mythology. At first I was a bit, what in the hells? about the fact he is white playing an Egyptian God, but then as you move through the movie it becomes kind of amusing – you basically have a colour palette of Gods in this movie, and a sound palette as well, with the large variety of accents going on.
Thoth was, simply, hilarious in His haughtiness and superiority. Anubis was not as scary as He should have been, but He was still pretty cool – and one of only two Gods not shown in a human-like form. Apophis (Apep) the other God never shown in human-like form, was scary looking though. It was hard for me, as an Aussie, to take Osiris all that seriously since He was played by Bryan Brown, but that could be a me thing and if he were in the movie for longer I may have got over it (like I was able to move past the idea of Horus being a Lannister).The treatment of the Goddesses was a bit lacking. They were very much in the background, or portrayed in ways that just doesn’t seem right to their mythology. Hathor was a little too simpering and girly-girly for my tastes, though Her compassion for humans was a nice touch. Nephthys was portrayed as sterile, despite the fact She has a child in mythology.
And Isis, poor Isis, given very little screen time despite Her large role in Egyptian myth and in the stories of Horus and I could be wrong, but if they mentioned Her name at all, it was once and I missed it. I immediately jumped to the conclusion that they chose to keep Her and Her name out of the movie because of real world stuff, ie. Daesh/ISIS/ISIL. And if this is the case, I think they missed a great opportunity to teach people that Isis is the name of a great Goddess and those little girls and women named Isis were named after that great Goddess and not a terrorist organisation – perhaps leading to less people attacking and demeaning those who are named Isis.
Of course this movie is not true to mythology, but they never are. Personally I loved the movie, but I am not that knowledgeable on Egyptian myth. I know enough to have noticed several differences, but not enough to be totally annoyed by them. However, I also know what it is like to watch movies about Greek mythology, aggravating, annoying and frustrating to say the least because they always miss the mark – so if you are Kemetic or have a love for Egyptian mythology, this movie is likely to piss you off.
Having said that, earlier this year I put together a unit study for our homeschool on death and the afterlife, so I learned a lot about the Egyptian afterlife, that knowledge did make it a little annoying for me when watching this movie, because the afterlife ideas were not exactly true to the “reality”.
So, all in all, a good fun beautiful movie, not an epic blockbuster movie, but still a lot of fun. Unless you are into Egyptian mythology, in which case you may hate it with a passion.
I will probably watch this again, even several times, and I think I will enjoy it each time.