Exodus: Gods & Kings, plastered all over your TV screens showing off the epic trailer which shows ‘The Director of Gladiator’; and forever will Ridley Scott be cursed with that tag line. If you don’t know already, Exodus follows the story of Moses who is a general and a member of the royal family alongside his brother Rameses, but then stumbling upon a bunch of Hebrews, he finds out the truth that he is indeed a Hebrew and was adopted. Exiled and thrown out of the family, Moses moves on and finds a new family. To then find out that the Egyptians led by his adopted brother Rameses is making the Hebrews slaves, to which Moses finds out about the ten plagues that will hit Egypt.
On paper, there couldn’t be anyone better to tell the story of Moses on the big screen that Ridley Scott. Known for his incredible attention to detail for visual effects and production design, you cannot fault his look for Exodus: Gods and Kings. Visually it is stunning and the costumes are to be praised, but again, Ridley Scott falls into the trap of story-telling and falls short. Unfortunately, the story line is beyond boring to me, even the visuals cannot save me from falling asleep to the film (Fun fact, I actually fell asleep). No matter how tired I am, I would not fall asleep to a film that I was enjoying. Praise has to be given to the terrific Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton who steal the show and add some energy into this very average picture. The big problem for me is Ridley Scott’s previous work, which again comes back to haunt him. Exodus feels like Gladiator in a lot of parts, I was still expecting Russell Crowe to pop out and slice and dice people to pieces of meat.
It’s a shame to see Ridley Scott in such a bad run of form; I detested The Counsellor & Robin Hood. While I enjoyed Prometheus, It’s still a disappointment in my eyes. Is Ridley Scott’s game coming to an end? I really hope not. Visually he has a lot more to offer, but I feel he doesn’t have the oomph that he had around 15 years ago to deliver a spine tingling blockbuster like he did with Gladiator. The best part about the film was at the end of the film where Ridley Scott dedicates the film to his late and younger brother Tony Scott. That was a very nice touch to what is a VERY, VERY, and I cannot empathize the word boring enough. Originally I was going to give the film a rating of 2.5 out of 5 but when I saw the dedication to Tony Scott at the end, it made me want to weep a little bit. Exodus: Gods & Kings delivers on good lead performances by Bale & Edgerton, impressive visuals but an average story which was executed to its highest potential. It is better than Noah though; 3 out of 5 stars for Exodus.