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Plot Details: This Review Reveals Minor Details About the Plot.


Exodus: Gods
and Kings

Plot Overview

1300 bce For 400 years the Hebrews have been slaves in Egypt, building its monuments, its statues, its glory. For all that time they have not for­gotten their home­land or their God. Neither has God for­gotten them.

At Pharaoh's palace, Memphis, ruling Pharaoh Seti (John Turturro) is holding a war council concerning the Hittites that are amassing near their border. Would we win or lose in a preemptive attack? he asks the high priestess. She (graphic­ally) consults the entrails of a beast to learn the answer. It is unclear the out­come, but she does say, “In the battle a leader will be saved … and his savior will one day lead.” A lot that tells them, so Seti hands two swords to his two boys who grew up together. “You have each other to keep each other safe,” he tells them.

The Egyptians attack the Hittites (who being Canaanites are black, descendants of Ham, son of Noah.) “Go Ramses, go!” (Joel Edger­ton) is rescued by resourceful Moses (Christian Bale.) When Ramses's father Seti hears, “You saved my son's life,” he tells him, it “doesn't make any sense, because you're not my blood. You can't succeed me.” Still, Moses is useful and he volunteers (“I'll go see the viceroy”) to take care of a matter concerning the Hebrew slaves.

 At Phitom  (“We get used to the smell”) where the Hebrews (“Israelite means he who wrestles with God”) are toiling away (“We pray to see Canaan again”), Moses meets one of the elders (“My name is Nun”) who informs him of his true heritage: “You are Hebrew.” Moses denies it at first, but later his sister confirms, Oy, “You were wearing this when I took you from the river, Mosche.” When word reaches the palace, Moses is forced into exile.

Traveling past  The Trian Straits  on the Red Sea, he makes his way to goat herding country where amongst a clan ceremony he weds (“I pledge my love”) beautiful Zipporah (María Valverde) and settles down to (“Proceed”) a happy family life. Some nine years later he's hiking in the hills (“It's God's mountain”) when a rock slide releases some methane gas that catches a bush on fire, and dazed he has a vision of a deity calling itself “I am.” His wife reminds him, “You were hit on the head,” but he's convinced he's been called to return to liberate his people.

In Egypt they don't know whether, “He has lost his mind,” or “he's found a god,” but a fortuitous series of natural calamities persuades the super­stitious Egyptians to expel the Jews just to be on the safe side. The Egyptian army then comes hard after them, four days behind, “less if we don't rest the horses.” So with “a sea ahead and an army behind,” Joshua (Aaron Paul) asks Moses, “What does God tell you?” As Moses is throwing in the towel, we wonder, if God doesn't inter­vene, could we at least have some CGI?


“Exodus: Gods and Kings” is based on the biblical story in Exodus in which Hebrew baby Moses to escape an Egyptian pogrom against Jewish new­borns, (Heb. 11:23) “when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they … were not afraid of the king's com­mand­ment.” He was rescued from an ark adrift in the river by a woman of the royal house­hold who then raised him as her own. When he was of age, he switched allegiance back to the Hebrews, (Heb. 11:24-26) “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.” He went into exile (Heb. 11:27). He returned and initiated the Passover (Heb. 11:28) that inoculated the Hebrews against a sudden illness that slew the young, the final straw persuading the Egyptians to let them all go. They escaped a hot pursuit (Heb. 11:29) when God miraculously parted the Red Sea for them. This story is well known to Jews and Christians alike, and contemporary man who has never read a Bible may have heard allegorical allusions to it in civil rights rhetoric where spokes­man Martin Luther King Jr (MLK) claims to have communicated with God (“I've been to the mountain top”) and come down to lead his (Negro) people to the promised land (of freedom.)

The American civil rights paradigm seems to have been projected directly onto this movie version of the Exodus story. There were questions of the Negro's status (“They are not Egyptians, they are slaves”), and whether they can even handle freedom, and how it might wreck the economy. Moses started an insurrection of trained guerilla fighters, and there was at first a militant dimension to 1960s civil rights agitation. In the movie, as in real life, it was decided that would take too long to convince the establishment; what they needed was to gain popular support of the people. In the movie that was done through calamities that the superstitious people attributed to a wrathful Hebrew God. In America it was done through mass media and the oratory skills of MLK claiming to represent God.

MLK rejected "gradualism" and preached “the fierce urgency of NOW.” The impetuous kid (Isaac Andrews) representing God (“I am”) in the movie is a complete manifestation of the one MLK encountered on his mountain top urging immediate results, both deities operating invisibly behind the scenes. The Old Testament God, on the other hand, was a patient Being, to the point of hardening Pharaoh's heart in order to protract the drama giving God credit. MLK's god only succeeded in discrediting at least the Christian foundations of America, to the point we've elected a Black president who tells us we're no longer a Christian country.

Robert H. Bork in Slouching Towards Gomorrah (238) writes:
[Researchers] Peter Brimelow and Leslie Spencer … quote Charles Murray: “There's hardly a single outcome—black voting rights, access to public accommodation, employment, particularly in white collar jobs—that couldn't have been predicted on the basis of pre–1964 trend lines.” “That's pretty devastating,” the authors say. “It suggests that we have spent trillions of dollars to create an out­come that would have happened even if the govern­ment had done nothing.”

The big "nothing" that God accomplished in the civil rights movement is reflected in the vanishingly small contribution He makes in this film. Immanuel Velikovsky in his (contro­versial) book Worlds in Collision, postulated that around the 15th century bce Venus was ejected from Jupiter to become a comet whose tail of gases swept the Earth triggering a cascading series of calamities in Egypt recorded in the Exodus story, and then the gravity from its flyby parted the Red Sea. So when I saw Moses twiddling his thumbs by the sea as the army approached, and then I noticed a storm brewing on the horizon, and a lingering falling star, I figured I better hold on to my seat and be thankful I'm not watching this in 3D.

When the movie was (finally) over, I had some time to kill before my bus came, so I sat down by a musical performer with his stand-up double bass who was waiting for the mall to turn off its canned Christmas music so he could play. He had time to play my one request, “Georgia on My Mind,” before I had to boogie. Reminded me of the romance in “Exodus” where Moses had “[Zipporah] on my mind.” Whether it's the civil rights tune or Christmas music, there's some delay before we can clear the decks for something else authentic, and this movie is not it, with the sole exception of Moses's marriage that I found touching. Since Zipporah's clan could forgive Moses for taking off on them, I suppose we can do the same, as per (2Cor. 2:10) “To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also.”

Production Values

“Exodus: Gods and Kings” (2014) had to amalgamate its name as another movie was already titled Exodus, and one in the making Gods and Kings. It was directed by Ridley Scott, a self-professed atheist who worked hard to make this movie work with­out honoring God in it. It was written by Adam Cooper, Bill Collage, Jeffrey Caine, and Steven Zaillian. It stars Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton, with supporting cast including Sigourney Weaver, Ben Kingsley, Aaron Paul, Ben Mendel­sohn, and John Turturro. The movie is dominated by Bale and Edgerton, with only minor supporting roles for the others. María Valverde is a decent performer not just a pretty face.

Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) rated it PG–13 for violence including battle sequences and intense images. It was filmed at Pine­wood Studios, Iver Heath, Bucking­ham­shire, England, UK, and the craggy scenery in Spain and the Canary Islands. Director of Photography Dariusz Wolski did a super job. The chariot clashes and the battles were heart-stopping. The CGI was amazing. The film as a whole—except for the romance—radiated a dark ambiance.

Review Conclusion w/ Christian Recommendation

I liked the romantic scene(s) and the song I listened to afterwards in the lobby, but that's not enough to make my day at the mall. This film was unable to fill the shoes its title called for, although an atheist or a civil rights advocate might love it. Rather than say any­thing more negative, I'm going to leave it at that.

Movie Ratings

Action factor: Well done action flick Suitability for Children: Suitable for children 13+ years Special effects: Absolutely amazing special effects Video Occasion: None of the Above Suspense: A few suspenseful moments Overall product rating: two stars

Works Cited

Scripture quoted from the King James Version. Pub. 1611, rev. 1769. Software.

Bork, Robert H. Slouching Towards Gomorrah. New York: HarperCollins, 1996. Print.