entertainment

Indonesia bans Hollywood epic 'Noah' over Islamic concerns

28 Comments

Indonesia has banned Hollywood biblical epic "Noah" starring Russell Crowe, censors said Tuesday, the latest Muslim country to stop the film being screened due to concerns it contradicts Islamic values.

Censors in the world's most populous Muslim-majority country said they decided to ban the film, which had been set for release Friday, as the depiction of prophets is forbidden under Islamic law.

As well as being a biblical figure, Noah is also a prophet for Muslims.

"We rejected the screening of the film in Indonesia," Zainut Tauhid Saadi, a member of the Indonesian Censorship Board, told AFP.

"The visual depiction of a prophet is forbidden in Islam," he said, adding: "The film will hurt both Christian and Muslim communities."

It came after the Paramount film based on the story of Noah's ark, which stars Crowe as Noah and is directed by Darren Aronofsky, was banned by Qatar, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates earlier this month.

Egypt's top Islamic body, the Al-Azhar institute, has called for "Noah" not to be screened in the country.

The film has also angered some Christian institutions in the United States due to Crowe's reportedly unconventional portrayal of Noah.

The ongoing controversy over the film, which also stars Jennifer Connolly and Emma Watson, prompted Paramount to announce last month they would add an explanatory message to future marketing materials for the movie.

It issued a joint statement with the U.S.-based National Religious Broadcasters body, announcing the move "to help audiences better understand that the feature film is a dramatization of the major scriptural themes and not a line-by-line retelling of the Bible story".

Indonesia has banned films in the past, including "Balibo" which which tells the story of Australian-based journalists allegedly killed by Indonesian troops in East Timor as Jakarta prepared to invade.

Jakarta claims the reporters were killed in crossfire.

"Noah" will be released this week in several countries, including the United States on Friday.

© (c) 2014 AFP

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

28 Comments
Login to comment

“We rejected the screening of the film in Indonesia,” Zainut Tauhid Saadi, a member of the Indonesian Censorship Board, told AFP.

“The visual depiction of a prophet is forbidden in Islam,” he said, adding: “The film will hurt both Christian and Muslim communities.”

If you don't like it, then don't watch it, but don't interfere with the right of everyone else to see it.

-11 ( +20 / -31 )

Stupidity and childishness of biblical proportions.

15 ( +18 / -3 )

For Dog's sake, it's only a movie.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

How friggin stupid, but again, this is one of the few countries that sides with China so go figure!!!!!!! Nut cases belong in the nut family!

2 ( +9 / -7 )

I am no Christian but just because a few countries want to BAN this movie, you know, IT REALLY MAKES ME WANT TO SEE IT ALL THE MORE!!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Brilliant. But you can get up to all sorts of other vices in Jakarta with local police turning a blind eye. Hypocrisy. not that i would force anyone to watch this tripe.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

So is Russell Crowe going to be all brooding and blood spattered? Well, what else could they mean by an unconventional portrayal... unless they mean he wears Frank N Furter's costume and speaks with a lisp.

Seriously though, I will never understand why religious groups are so opposed to films and TV series based on their myths and legends. I still remember the fuss caused by "The Life of Brian".

3 ( +6 / -3 )

"Oh Moses" was a great laugh.

Recall how the Vatican initially hated "Brother Sun, Sister Moon" because the thought that Donovan was unfit to write the soundtrack.

Might see this movie if I got some money and time to spare.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In the States, some conservative Christians are concerned about matters such as Noah's youthful age in the film, which, according to them, should really be about 600, as written in the Bible.

I haven't seen the film, but I like the spirit of taking on mythologies. They are ours, not we theirs.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

tvytgotUS:

How friggin stupid, but again, this is one of the few countries that sides with China so go figure!!!!!!! Nut cases belong in the nut family!

Yeah, I personally blame China for this movie being screwed up. Tomorrow, I'll blame the rain on the Chinese too.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

'In the States, some conservative Christians are concerned about matters such as Noah's youthful age in the film, which, according to them, should really be about 600, as written in the Bible.'

I've heard 'serious' debate among the young-earth creationists on the topic of whether Noah took dinosaurs on the Ark. I can't imagine this is Cecil B. Demille meets Spielberg, but the idea of a couple of T-Rex lovebirds is quite sweet.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"the depiction of prophets is forbidden under Islamic law."

OK, so devout Muslims don't have to watch it. Everyone else in the country should be able to watch it if they want. When are the people in these Muslim-majority countries going to rise up and throw out their stifling government mis-leaders?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

So Noah is a prophet to Muslims, thus a prophet of ... erm, which Superior Being? Would that be 'God' or 'Allah', which the Malaysian Islamists insist are different and not to be confused. Which part of "there is no God but God" do they not understand? Are they trying to have their cake and eat it too?

Besides, Hollywood and the Muftis deserve each other. 50-50. A stupid draw.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Censors in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country said they decided to ban the film, which had been set for release Friday, as the depiction of prophets is forbidden under Islamic law.

This is a perfect example of why there will always be conflicts between the Muslim and non-Muslim world's. It is a shame that their religion is so strict that it does not allow for the people to see a range of interpretations and form their own opinions.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@plasticmonkey:"In the States, some conservative Christians are concerned about matters such as Noah's youthful age in the film, which, according to them, should really be about 600, as written in the Bible."

I wonder what a 600 year old person is sup supposed to look like....

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I'm a Christian. 100%.

I'm laughing my socks off at these people....

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Jimizo. I'm in the latter category you listed. But for the most part the Christians, Catholics, Jewish, Buddhists, etc. tend to be respectful of eachothers' beliefs.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@Samwatters I agree ( although I'm sure my old priests and teachers would take exception to you listing Christians and Catholics separately). I respect religious figures such as Buddha, Maimonides, Jesus and Mohammed as in many ways great men but clearly men of their time. If a man of Mohammed's intelligence were alive today, I'm sure he would wince at this childish nonsense and deplore disrespect of others.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Islamic value, Infidels, People of the book, censorship ??? No value arrived from these narrow perspectives of humanity.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Jimizo. You're correct; I probably should have said "catholics and protestants" or something similiar!

"No, all the main religions seem to agree on the importance of putting others before yourself, humility, and a willingness to try and improve as a human being."

@Lucabrasi. So well put! It's off topic but I have a wonderful story from my Detroit childhood that crystalizes what you just said. When I was in high school, I was asked to watch a four-year-old child in my neighborhood during the winter holidays while his mother and father went out to dinner with their grandfather who had flown in from overseas. I went to the child's house and while watching TV the boy saw a colorful (Christmas) tree and became very excited and wanted to make one of his own. I told him we couldn't cut down any trees but we could make one out of colored paper. So we did. About three hours later the boy's parents returned with their grandfather who just happened to be an Orthodox Jew from Tel Aviv. The boy immediately showed his colorful tree to his grandfather while the parents looked on in horror. The grandfather took the paper from his grandson and smiled and said, "This is most beautiful Christmas tree I have ever seen." WIth a kiss and a hug the boy went to bed all smiles. I tried to apologize to the grandfather for not being aware of the family's faith but the old man held up his hand and said to me something I will never forget, "Young man, I am a Jew but I am also a grandather and the measure of man is whether he chooses to be right or to be happy. And with my grandchild that is an easy choice."

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@samwatters

Thank you. : )

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@samwatters, nice story. It shows the difference between tolerance and intolerance, something distinctly lacking in Islam in general and in Islamic governments in particular.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@BBQ demon

I wonder what a 600 year old person is sup supposed to look like....

Like Russel Crowe of course hohoho

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@JohnGalt. Thanks! I like that story too.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It's a fairytale anyway so why not just enjoy it?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I've heard 'serious' debate among the young-earth creationists on the topic of whether Noah took dinosaurs on the Ark. I can't imagine this is Cecil B. Demille meets Spielberg, but the idea of a couple of T-Rex lovebirds is quite sweet.

What happened to the dinosaurs after they were saved? Were they hiding all this time?

http://search.dilbert.com/search?p=Q&lbc=dilbert&uid=810661807&ts=custom&w=Dinosaur%20Hiding&af=&method=and&view=list&filter=type%3acomic&isort=date+rev

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Is anyone else astounded that the Biblical story of the Great Flood - (apparently) a planet-wide event in which a supposedly "all loving" god wipes out every single thing on the face of the planet - is a children's story?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Actually the door swings both ways since Christian faith does not tolerate bigamy and is outlawed in most Chritian nations.

The key word is tolerance towards other "Culture" it's their faith let them practice it as long it does not offend others.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites