Exodus: Gods and Kings (Blu-ray) Official AVS Forum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 06:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Exodus: Gods and Kings (Blu-ray) Official AVS Forum Review



The defiant leader Moses rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, setting 400,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.



The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )

Film:

Extras:

Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )

96



Details:

Studio and Year: 20th Century Fox - 2014
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 150 minutes
Genre: Adventure/Drama

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, Aaron Paul, John Turturro, Ben Mendelson, Sigourney Weaver, Ben Kingsley
Directed by: Ridley Scott
Music by: Alberto Iglesias
Written by: Adam Cooper, Bill Collage, Jeffrey Caine, Steven Zaillian
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: March 17, 2015


"Once brothers, now enemies"


My Take:

From Ridley Scott, the acclaimed director of Gladiator, comes the epic adventure Exodus: Gods and Kings the story of one man's daring courage to take on the might of an empire. Using state of the art visual effects and engrossing 3D immersion, Exodus: Gods and Kings brings new life to the story of the defiant leader Moses as he rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, setting 400,000 slaves on a monumental journey to escape Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.

As a person of faith and a fan of Cecil B. DeMille’s visionary film on the same subject I found little to like in this sterile and pointless retelling. The narrative is coarse and definitively lacking in character development. The nearly complete and utter lack of theological foundation within the fundamental elements of the plot left me wondering why make another film based on this story especially when it has already been done, and better? The portrayal of God as an angry child bereft of divinity and purpose bordered on insulting.

The characters of Moses, with his incessant sword wielding was bad enough, but his “disagreements” with and constant barking at the almighty as well as his lack of spiritual conviction were poorly conceived and detrimental. Integral elements to the original story were either left out completely, skimmed over or improperly tossed in. The important people in Moses’ life, his “mother” Bithia, Seti, Joshua, Aaron, and Zipporah were scantily drawn having only brief lines of dialogue. Did I mention that Moses trains the Hebrew slaves for combat and at one point they carry out missions against the Egyptians?
Ridiculous.

Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton as Moses and Ramses were the primarily players. I tend to like them both but neither fit the bill especially when compared to the likes of Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner who brought so much more to the same roles. I couldn’t help but feel as though Ben Kingsley, Aaron Paul, Ben Mendelson, and Sigourney Weaver (had two scenes and maybe two lines of dialogue) were sorely underused. As much as I like John Turturro he was completely miscast in the role of Seti. In terms of the scope of the film’s production there is no question that Ridley Scott’s penchant for epic filmmaking is on display.

Exodus: Gods and Kings is a poorly conceived and clumsily executed retelling of a Biblical story that has previously been done by Hollywood to much better effect. As someone that enjoys the story of Moses I hoped it would be a refreshing and where appropriate, reverential take. Unfortunately that isn’t the case.


Parental Guide:

The rating is for violence including battle sequences and intense images.


AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**



Audio: 96
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Dynamics:
  • Low frequency effects:
  • Surround Sound presentation:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Dialogue Reproduction:
  • Low frequency extension * (non-rated element):
  • DSU Rating * (non-rated element):



Video: 96
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity:
  • Black Level/Shadow Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:
  • Fleshtones:
  • Compression:



Exodus: Gods and Kings comes to Blu-ray Disc from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 26 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 5.2 Mbps.

This is an excellent video presentation that boasts image quality that is indicative of a newer release film. Resolution is generally strong as images have crisp definition and lucid clarity. Objects onscreen appear dimensionally strong with exquisite rendering that discloses subtle minutia captured by the camera’s lens during close ups. The level of sharpness fluctuates some however this is attributable the extensive CGI used and it doesn’t adversely affect the quality of the video. The color palette isn’t particularly extensive as sepia tones, grays and other neutral colors are heavily utilized. Primary colors come in various shades that when coupled along with sequences containing bright/dynamic highlights gives images enriching tonal warmth. Fleshtones are naturally rendered with warm accents that give them lifelike tonality. Blacks are inky and noise free with discernibly deep gradations that enhance the films many dark sequences. The deep shadows, multi-staged grays, delineated colors, and inky blacks looked terrific on my large screen. I didn’t see any overt signs of video degrading artifacts or extraneous compression related noise.

The DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio soundtrack is demonstration quality and is sure to please discerning enthusiasts who like to show off their home theater systems. This recording has wide dynamic range and boasts superlative clarity and high level detail. Dialogue is definitive and appreciably lucid through the center channel as it reaches far into the room. It’s located just slightly in front of the left/right speakers within the acoustic space it occupies in the soundfield. I never had any trouble distinguishing even the slightest changes in the pitch or inflection of voices. Channel separation and imaging is excellent. This drew out both large and small sound elements and allowed their directional correlation based upon the onscreen events to be definable. The mix makes effective and regular use of the surround channels to extend the front soundstage and reproduce the spatial and discrete sounds of this sometimes aggressive soundtrack. This is a dynamically strong mix that utilizes low frequency effects to provide rewarding bass response that on occasion reaches deep enough to energize the room. I had a great time with this one!


Bonus Features:
  • The Exodus Historical Guide – Interactive pop-up feature
  • (HD) Deleted/Extended Scenes – 15 minutes
  • Audio Commentary by Director Ridley Scott and co-writer Jeffrey Caine
  • Digital HD Copy



Final Thoughts:

Exodus: Gods and Kings is a poorly conceived and clumsily executed retelling of a Biblical story that has previously been done by Hollywood to much better effect. It comes to Blu-ray from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment featuring top notch high definition audio/video quality mated with a dismal supplemental package that is highlighted by a boring interactive historical guide and a decent filmmaker audio commentary. Exodus Gods and Kings isn’t a very good movie but it looks and sounds great on Blu-ray which might qualify it for a rental.







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post #2 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 07:11 AM
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Was on the fence with this one awaiting your review. I assumed "sonically" it would be good and you confirmed. I was not sure about the story and you've confirmed that as well. I guess I'll wait for it to show up on Netflix which won't be till April 14th.

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post #3 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 08:48 AM
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I'll rent the 3D version but pretty sure I won't buy it.
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post #4 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 09:21 AM
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Didn't go see it in the theatre because I suspected it wouldn't be theologically true to the text. Won't see it at all now that you've confirmed that suspicion. Too many good movies out there that look and sound great to watch to waste time watching a bad movie just because it had high production values.

Thanks for all the reviews you do. I enjoy reading them and they definitely help me decide what to buy and what to skip.
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I saw the cartoon, The Price of Egypt years ago and was somewhat curious about this movie. Thanks for the review, I might purchase the Blu-Ray instead of renting it on RedBox!

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post #6 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 09:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farmersagent046 View Post
Didn't go see it in the theatre because I suspected it wouldn't be theologically true to the text. Won't see it at all now that you've confirmed that suspicion. Too many good movies out there that look and sound great to watch to waste time watching a bad movie just because it had high production values.

Thanks for all the reviews you do. I enjoy reading them and they definitely help me decide what to buy and what to skip.
Greetings,

Thanks very much for the vote of confidence farmersagent046.


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post #7 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 09:39 AM
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Although Ralph is reviewing the stripped-down 2D edition (the 3D combo has literally hours of extras), I've been told that the deleted scenes on this 2D version has the option to view them in both 2D and 3D.
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post #8 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 10:00 AM
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I wanted this movie to be good, but it felt like they tried to pack too much into a film. Instead of telling one really good story they tried to tell 5000 stories with half developed characters.
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post #9 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 10:05 AM
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Question is which is worse...this or Noah! I rented Noah just to see how bad it was....it was worse than I had thought. I had really high hopes when this was announced and the previews came out. The 3D trailer was pretty cool too. But hearing Bale's comments on Moses led me to believe that if this script was his only real knowledge of the Exodus story and of the character of Moses, then it would be pretty bad.

Sad to say, but Ralph you have confirmed what I have heard many other reviewers say. I will give it rent if for no other reason than to see how bad it is and be able to speak from a perspective of having seen it myself.
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I watched this last night (the 3D version on BR), and I was entertained. ...Picture, sound, CGI effects, decors, locales, all top-notch.

...The acting, the characters, and the roles not to the same level, IMO. It could have been better in this department, I think.
Even the fight scenes were missing the realism. ...John Turturro; different, not used to that. ...Christian Bale (Batman) as Moses; that too was different to ingest.
And the young kid, as the VOG "Voice of God" above and on ground; awesome young actor, I found. ...This boy we'll see him much much more; mark that spot.
{It is through new life that we create our paradise garden on this planet.}

But it's a movie, and it's ok to look @ it from a fresh perspective...without having been there when the real events took place in our history, and from how much have been created in the books of Earth.

I don't truly care about what has been done in the past regarding cinema history (on this particular flick), and other actors depicting the roles.
Like I said; I want to view it as a fresh look, and not comparing. ...Just digesting the new meat offered here, in the now (2015).

This is Sr. Ridley Scott's own movie making, his own touch, his choice, his decision to entertain us as he sees it and with all his age and experience and all.
For that it is great; we can go along for the ride, for the adventure, for the observation, for the moving vision of a man and his team.

Sure, 'John Wick' it ain't; it's a different type of "epic", with swords and arrows. ...Not guns and machine guns.
Time period is different too, and stories were differently written for different purposes in mankind's history.

All in all I'm real glad to have this 3D version; it is the full package to get.
This is my honest view, my own vision, my personal opinion, and not the bible as it was written on "stones" or the ten commandments from the book plus all the other law's books written by men before and afterwards. ...This is movie magic, this is entertainment, ...and that, it delivers plenty of it; not perfect but good enough for me.
Would it have been better with a Dolby Atmos audio soundtrack? ...Maybe not, but maybe yes too; it all depends...of who is doing the mix behind that new 3D sound console.

P.S. I could have wrote a very long post describing all aspects of this film, but this will suffice for right now. ...And I might reply to some people's other comments as we go along, and in other threads too. ...I'll go with the inspiration of the moment.

♦ Exodus ......... Bob Marley

And thank you Ralph for your review, for your own opinion. ...And I agree with your technical scores (except that I viewed the 3D version).
...The 2D version for another time.
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post #11 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 12:22 PM
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Know what's missing? - Voice of God channel.
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post #12 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 12:49 PM
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So does Bale run around saying, "I'm Moses"?

That's all I want to know about the movie.

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If you want to see a great version of this story, see Cecil B. de Mille's "The Ten Commandments".

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post #14 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 01:03 PM
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Thanks for the review, but I have to wonder again like every other biblical adaption, why a film adaption has to be based on such a rigid interpretation from the Bible, compared to fictional adaption/diversion of same story? Seems like the odds are against any studio producing works of this nature.

Its interesting looking at all the recent online user reviews, some love it for the presentation and story line, to outright dislike of the film because its not a modern carbon copy retelling of Cecil B. de Mille's "The Ten Commandments" with current CGI effects.

To each their own I guess.
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Thanks for the review Ralph.

I had no intention on watching this movie, even though it's "just a movie". That is the beauty of freedom -- you want to support and spend your money on something that you like, go ahead -- for whatever reason you don't like it, watch/buy something else.

Great review that tells it "like it is". As always Ralph, great work.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by superleo View Post
Thanks for the review Ralph.

I had no intention on watching this movie, even though it's "just a movie". That is the beauty of freedom -- you want to support and spend your money on something that you like, go ahead -- for whatever reason you don't like it, watch/buy something else.

Great review that tells it "like it is". As always Ralph, great work.
Ralph,

Thanks for the candid comments.
I think I'll just re-watch the classic, with Charlton Heston & Yule Brenner.
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I saw it when it came out and i was extremely disappointed . This movie should have not been made.
Thank god it was cheappy Tuesday.
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Arrow Exodus 3D version

Quote:
Originally Posted by film113 View Post
Although Ralph is reviewing the stripped-down 2D edition (the 3D combo has literally hours of extras), I've been told that the deleted scenes on this 2D version has the option to view them in both 2D and 3D.
I did not check it; but I do know that it is full packed with special features...approximately seven hours of it.
...Three BDs.

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I'll rent the 3D version but pretty sure I won't buy it.
Where can you rent 3D version?
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So does Bale run around saying, "I'm Moses"?

That's all I want to know about the movie.
No, but @ one point when asked his name he obliged.
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I saw it when it came out and i was extremely disappointed . This movie should have not been made.
Thank god it was cheappy Tuesday.
I wouldn't thank god, god has nothing to do with it.
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post #23 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farmersagent046 View Post
Didn't go see it in the theatre because I suspected it wouldn't be theologically true to the text. Won't see it at all now that you've confirmed that suspicion. Too many good movies out there that look and sound great to watch to waste time watching a bad movie just because it had high production values.

Thanks for all the reviews you do. I enjoy reading them and they definitely help me decide what to buy and what to skip.
Same situation here...I suspected a bevy of theological inaccuracies and a lack of respect for the divine subject matter. Im sad to read that this is exactly the case.
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post #24 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 04:28 PM
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Where can you rent 3D version?
3d-blurayrental.com

http://www.store-3d-blurayrental.com/

Ray
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Originally Posted by NorthSky View Post
No, but @ one point when asked his name he obliged.
Sounds like a solid choice for movie night then. I've always wanted to watch a movie with Batman in it.

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post #26 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 04:59 PM
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So is the main area of dissapointment the lack of accuracy to the original stories or just bad acting and/or paceing or cheesy dialouge? This is one im probably gunna have to rent and judge for myself.

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post #27 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 05:17 PM
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I see there is the possibility of a extended directors cut of the film in the future. Might be good test material to see how long you can watch a movie.

Reference
Quote:
Sure, there are some gaps in the storyline (to be fair, it is a tough one to fit in under a three hour frame)

There are talks of a 4 hour cut, which Ridley describes as the version he wanted. But unlike Kingdom of Heaven which always held more potential on an extended cut, 2 and half hours of this is more than enough for me. I just can't see anything that might save this in any way. One of the worse things I've seen Ridley do and I quite enjoyed The Counsellor and Prometheus which everyone else seems to have hated and that says something..

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post #28 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 06:15 PM
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I just watched the 2D version and will be watching the 3D version some time this weekend.

The audio and visuals were really good for me, and the story was okay. While they are great actors, the main characters played by Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, Aaron Paul, John Turturro, and Sigourney Weaver, didn't feel like the best choice of actors for their respective roles, especially early on. Ben Kingsly and Indira Varma didn't seem too far out of place, though. Maybe each of their places in the film will chime better during the second viewing.

Thanks for another great review, Ralph!

oz
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post #29 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 07:25 PM
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Wow, Ralph. It's not often you give a movie such a difinitively bad review. Is the A/V in the movie good enough to make it worth the time to watch it?
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post #30 of 95 Old 03-18-2015, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giedrys View Post
Where can you rent 3D version?
Family Video has a very nice 3D selection.

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