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Religious Leaders Urge Flock to See Noah

Prominent faith leaders say the cinematic retelling of Noah's Ark is true to the Bible, with Focus on the Family president Jim Daly saying the movie "gives Christians a great opportunity to engage our culture with the biblical Noah"

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Religious leaders are on board with Noah, Darren Aronofsky’s dramatic re-telling of the story of Noah’s Ark, which stars Russell Crowe. Several scholars and religious leaders participated in a video about the Paramount film, encouraging the faithful to see the movie.

Writer-producer Phil Cooke made the video at Paramount’s request after he wrote a blog post encouraging Christians to check out the film. “It’s a horrifying story about how serious human sinfulness is,” said King’s College President Gregory Thornbury.

Ari Handel, who wrote the script, describes some of the biblical interpretation in the film: “The story of Noah starts with this concept of strong justice, that the wickedness of man will soon be met with justice, and it ends when the rainbow comes and it says, even though the heart of man is filled with wickedness, I will never again destroy the world,” he said. “So it ends with this idea of mercy. God somehow goes from this idea of judging the wickedness to mercy and grace. So we decided that was a powerful and emotional arc to go through, and we decided to give that arc to Noah.”

Focus on the Family president Jim Daly said, “Darren Aronofsky is not a theologian, nor does he claim to be. He is a filmmaker and a storyteller, and in Noah, he has told a compelling story. It is a creative interpretation of the scriptural account that allows us to imagine the deep struggles Noah may have wrestled with as he answered God’s call on his life. This cinematic vision of Noah’s story gives Christians a great opportunity to engage our culture with the biblical Noah, and to have conversations with friends and family about matters of eternal significance.”

The video released this weekend is just the latest effort by Paramount to market Noah to Christian audiences, after early screenings disappointed some religious-minded viewers. In February, the studio released a joint statement with the National Religious Broadcasters admitting the movie was not 100% biblically accurate but saying it was true to the spirit of the scriptural story.

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