Oh, My Pop Culture Religion: The Prince of Egypt & Acceptable Biblical Storytelling

There are certain things that I just really cannot stand when it comes to retelling stories from the Bible. One of these things is the casting of white actors to play Biblical figures who lived in Africa or in the Middle East. Another is the attempt to “amp up” Biblical stories and make them more “action-packed”. That said, I have no problem with people taking creative liberties with Biblical stories as long as they remain true to the spirit of the original. Exodus: Gods and Kings seems to have committed all of the above atrocities on what would otherwise be a good Biblical story. But I don’t want to talk about the racist trainwreck that is Exodus: Gods and Kings (at least not much); rather, I want to talk about one movie that did it all right and explain why future movies about the Bible should follow its example. So without further ado, let’s talk about why The Prince of Egypt is one of the best damn retellings of a Biblical story pretty much ever.

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Are Some Legends Better Left Forgotten?: A Legend Review

October is knocking ever harder on our doors with cold weather and an abundance of pumpkin flavored goodies, and I think we’re all well aware of what that means.

Okay, maybe not specifically that. However, though his filmography seems to argue otherwise, Tim Curry is one of the actors I most associate with this spooky time of year. Honestly, he’s the only one. Something about his presence seems to scream to me “Halloween”. As such, what better way to prepare myself for the oncoming slew of costumes and trick-or-treaters than to indulge in some movies starring my favorite stage ham? None. There is no better way.

I spoke briefly about Labyrinth during my last Fanfiction Friday, and how it’s one of the most important movies in my life. Perhaps it comes as no surprise, then, that I also have a sort of sweet nostalgia for Ridley Scott’s Legend. Having come into possession of the director’s cut, I was pleased to discover that Scott was finally able to “restore [his] original vision for the film” and that he now considers Legend complete. I haven’t watched this film for several years, and even then I watched the toned down for TV version, so I was pleased to finally have the opportunity to sit down and watch it in full. Was this fantastical love story, entwined between a battle for light and the ultimate darkness, as good as I remembered?

No. Oh god, no. No, it was not.

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Trailer Tuesdays: Prometheus

So my first thought upon seeing this trailer was something along the lines of this: Well, shit, if there’s one franchise that just refuses to die….

But, you know what? I’m glad Aliens is still going. Despite how bad or how senseless the movies have gotten, they provide a fun experience. I can’t stop loving this franchise, because no matter how embarrassing it gets, I still find some entertainment value in it. Like, take the fourth movie, for example. It’s stupid. There’s little to nothing in it that can be considered good, except maybe when the creepy scientist dies. It is a blemish in Joss Whedon’s history. A wonderful, beautiful catastrophe, but a blemish nevertheless.

So my only conclusion thus far is that Prometheus will either be amazing or enjoyably bad. One or the other. There’s no middle ground here.

Now, Prometheus is the fifth installment, not including the movies that face the Aliens off against the Predators, and it’s a prequel. I don’t know why everything nowadays is getting prequels. Prequels are not yet the bane of my existence, though Star Wars tried and failed to make that happen, but I feel as though prequels are just cropping up all over the place, and for the most part, they don’t always add to the story. Sometimes, it feels as though they exist for the sole purpose of making money with little to no artistic integrity behind them. Of course, that doesn’t stop them from selling. I’m looking at you, Star Wars, Star Ocean, Star Insert-Whatever-the-Crap-You-Want-Here.

There’s a bit of a space theme here.

Regardless, Joss Whedon has a lot more experience now, so that gives me some hope for this film. Ridley Scott actually has nothing to do with the sequel films, but ever since watching the first one, Aliens are something that I would associate with him, so it’s nice to see him back on the franchise. Hopefully, between the two of them, they can pull off a halfway decent movie.

So another thought I’ve been having about this movie: Why do science fiction films, shows, books, whatnot, feel the need to name their ships—or spaceships, I guess—Prometheus? Hell, even Stargate has a ship named Prometheus. Are there not enough ancient names from mythology we can use, or do we really have to use this one over and over again?

Furthermore, I don’t know if it’s just me, but I’m finding it hard to believe that Idris Elba has any time in his life for necessities, like eating and sleeping. He keeps showing up in the movies I review. Like, at first, I thought he was just trying to be the token black guy in comic movies, but it is nice to see that he’s expanding his horizons. But thank goodness he’s playing the token character in this film, because at least he’s a good actor. And who knows, maybe he won’t die. I mean, after all, it’s not as though the industries have a habit of killing the one and only black guy. It’s a science-fiction film; he’ll be safe.

Yeah, all kidding aside, this looks like it’ll be good, or at least entertaining.