Exodus: gods and kings

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German title Exodus: gods and kings
Original title Exodus: Gods and Kings
Country of production United States
United Kingdom
original language English
Publishing year 2014
length 150 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
JMK 12
Director Ridley Scott
script Steven Zaillian ,
Jeffrey Caine ,
Bill Collage ,
Adam Cooper
production Ridley Scott,
Peter Chernin ,
Mark Huffam ,
Michael Schaefer ,
Jenno Topping
music Alberto Iglesias
camera Dariusz Wolski
cut Billy Rich

Exodus: Gods and Kings (Original title: Exodus: Gods and Kings ) is an American - British Bible adaptation from 2014 by Ridley Scott .

The plot is based on the book of Moses and the Exodus themed therein , the exodus of the Israelites from Egyptian bondage. Christian Bale embodies Moses , who frees his people from the bondage of Pharaoh Ramses. Joel Edgerton , Aaron Paul , Ben Kingsley and Sigourney Weaver can also be seen in other roles .

In the US, the film was released on December 12, 2014. In Germany as well as in Austria it started on December 25, 2014.


In the 13th century BC, Pharaoh Seti I had the Israelites, strangers in his land, enslaved and, in order to contain their numbers, their male descendants drowned in the Nile. Only one boy survives, Moses, when he is abandoned in a basket on the Nile by his mother . He is found by the Pharaoh's daughter and grows up as an Egyptian prince with the crown prince Ramses.

As adults, Moses, then called Moses, and Ramses are both generals in the Egyptian army. When the Hittites camped with their forces in front of Kadesh , a high priestess prophesied that a leader would be saved and that his rescuers would one day become leaders. In the battle against the Hittites, Ramses' life is actually in danger and is saved by Moses. He tells Sethos about it and he is grateful.

When the governor of Pithom worries about a revolt by the slaves, Moses finds out more about it, but also disapproves of the governor living like a king when he is not one. Through Nun, an old slave, Moses learns of his past, but at first does not want to believe it. When Sethos lies sick on his deathbed, he says that Moses would be the better successor.

Finally, after the death of his father, Ramses becomes the new king and reigns as Ramses II. He learns the story of Moses' past from the governor and wants to find out the truth. He threatens Miriam, who is apparently Moses' sister and who raised both of them, in the event of an incorrect answer, to cut off her arm with the sword, whereupon Moses confesses the truth to him. His mother wants Ramses to execute Moses, but instead sends Moses into exile. After a long journey, Moses finds a village where he meets his future wife Zippora, marries her and has a son named Gershom with her.

Nine years go by. Moses, who is now so called, is a shepherd and Midian is his new home. During a storm, he meets God, who embodies himself in a little boy and commands him to free his people from Egypt. Moses then returns to Egypt and initially goes unnoticed. He confronts Ramses with the demand that all slaves be released. As a result, Ramses gives the order to murder Moses, whereupon the latter goes into hiding for the time being. When Ramses decides to publicly execute a Hebrew family for every day that has passed while searching for Moses, Moses teaches the slaves archery and starts a war of attrition. They carry out attacks on Egyptian storage facilities and transport ships with the aim of inciting the population against Ramses. But God doesn't want to wait that long and helps. He unleashes the ten plagues that now plague the city of Memphis . First, crocodiles massacre fishermen and the water turns red. As a result, the fish die and huge numbers of frogs invade Memphis, followed by flies. But although Egypt is almost perishing from hail, cattle die-offs and a huge plague of locusts, Ramses remains steadfast. It all finally culminates in a dramatic climax when the Egyptian children, including Ramses' son, are killed in the tenth plague, while Hebrew children are spared. As a result, out of grief, Ramses orders the expulsion of all slaves (the exodus ).

When the Hebrew slaves set out for Canaan under Moses' leadership , the persecution by the Egyptians began. Ramses wants revenge and is ready to commit genocide. The Hebrews manage to cross the Red Sea on the Strait of Tiran after Moses threw his sword into the sea and the sea was pushed aside. The Egyptian army is being decimated on a cliff, but is catching up so that the two sides are facing each other. A huge wave forces the Egyptian army to turn back, so that only Moses and Ramses face each other. As Ramses races towards him with his chariot, Moses calls out to him to come to his side as he will not make it back. Both are captured by the water masses, but survive. Ramses encounters his soldiers washed up dead on the beach, while Moses goes to his people. He asks his wife if she would like to come too.

At the end you see Moses carving the Ten Commandments in stone. God comments on this by saying that the Hebrews need guidance and orientation.


The casting of the film caused controversy. While white actors were engaged with Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton and all the main actors, predominantly dark-skinned actors were engaged for smaller roles such as the Israelite slaves or the Egyptian citizens. The film takes place in Africa at a time when whites were more of a minority. The Great Sphinx of Giza , which can be seen in the film, is said to have a European appearance. A boycott of the film was therefore called for in social networks.

The shooting of the film took place mainly in Spain and began in October 2013 near Almería in southeastern Andalusia and the Sierra Alhamilla mountains there . In the same Andalusian region, the casting for 3000 to 4000 extras who were needed for the film took place. Other scenes, such as the division of the Red Sea , were filmed in Fuerteventura . The interior was shot at Pinewood Studios in London . Around 6000 extras were involved in the project.

Christian Bale is already the fourth Oscar winner to play the role of Moses . He previously played Charlton Heston ( The Ten Commandments 1956), Burt Lancaster ( Moses , 1975) and Ben Kingsley ( The Bible - Moses , 1996). For Ben Kingsley it is also the third film about Moses in which he has participated. After he was seen in 1996 in The Bible - Moses himself as Moses , he spoke in 2007 in the original English version of the cartoon The Ten Commandments the role of the narrator. The actors Oscar Isaac and Javier Bardem turned down the role of Ramses .

Originally the name of the film was simply Exodus , but in March 2014 the producers decided to expand the title with the subtitle Gods and Kings .

Differences from the Bible and historical inaccuracies

  • In the Bible, God speaks to Moses from the burning bush. In the film, he also embodies himself in a little boy.
  • In the film, Moses leaves Zippora and his son Gersom behind in Midian . In the Old Testament, however, she travels to Egypt with Moses and his sons.
  • In the film, Moses rides a horse and uses a saddle with stirrups . However, stirrups were not invented until centuries later.
  • In the biblical model, before his flight from Egypt, Moses kills an Egyptian overseer who beats a Hebrew. It is true that Moses kills an Egyptian in Scott's film, but only after he has approached him from behind and insulted him as a slave. There are no signs of remorse for the murder in the film's Moses.
  • In the biblical story, God sends two signs to prove that he chose Moses. On the one hand, he turns Moses 'staff into a snake, and on the other, he causes Moses' hand to contract leprosy briefly. In particular, the symbol of the staff, which turns into a snake, was taken up in many film adaptations and paintings, but is missing in this film adaptation. In the film, Moses' staff receives his son Gersom, who stays in Midian.
  • The armed revolt of the Hebrews shown in the film is not biblical, nor is the execution of entire families by the Pharaoh to force the extradition of Moses.
  • Moses is described in the Old Testament as a poorly gifted orator. God then gives him his brother Aaron as rhetorical support. In the film, Moses has an extroverted, educated, eloquent demeanor.
  • In the Bible, Moses was called by God at the age of 80. He's a lot younger in the movie, probably in his 40s.
  • The sea is not divided as in the biblical story, but simply pushed aside. The column of smoke and fire that prevents the Egyptians in the Bible from reaching the Israelites to bring them back to Egypt does not appear in the film at all. The decision of Moses shown in the film for the path over the mountains is also not biblical. That the Pharaoh's soldiers die of his own ambition and hunger for revenge, because they are at the mercy of steep slopes and landslides, also does not correspond to the biblical model.
  • The waters of the Nile turned to blood through Moses' miracle. The film shows a crocodile massacre that colors the river.
  • Instead of a staff, Moses wears a sword decorated with gold in the film. The stick with which Moses taps stone to let water flow out of the stone, as well as the flowers on the tip of the stick, do not appear in the film.
  • Religious aspects of the Exodus that are particularly important for the Jews do not appear in the film. In the film, the Hebrews have to mark the doors of their houses with the blood of lambs in order to protect themselves from the angel of death. It is not shown, however, that they should roast the lamb and, ready to march, eat it whole while standing, along with unleavened bread. The word Passover is not mentioned either.
  • In the film, Moses himself chisels the Ten Commandments into the stone tablets, while in the biblical story he only receives them from God and smashes them again when he arrives in the valley and sees that his people have created a golden calf as an idol.
  • The pyramid construction is shown in the film. Although the excerpt from Egypt described in the Bible cannot be precisely dated, the construction of the pyramids can be set at least a millennium earlier. Since the pyramids are also not mentioned in the Bible, it is unlikely that the Hebrews would participate in the building of the pyramids. The building of the pyramids is definitely anachronistic for this film adaptation, since the film is set at the time of Seti I / Ramses II ( 19th dynasty ), when no more pyramids were built.
  • In the film, Seti I is buried in Abu Simbel , where temples were only built by his son Ramses II . During the funeral, his son performs the mouth opening ceremony , which was performed by the high priest in ancient Egypt .
  • In the film, the battle of Kadesh against the Hittites, shown at the beginning, takes place under the rule of Seti I. In truth, it fell into the fifth year of Ramses II's reign.
  • In one scene in the film, the high priestess wears the famous headgear of Nefertiti .
  • In battle, Ramses wears a vulture hood on his head, a crown that in ancient Egypt was worn exclusively by female members of the royal family and was part of the regalia of various goddesses.
  • The showdown between Moses and Ramses II is not found in the biblical account.


At Rotten Tomatoes , only 29% of reviews are positive, out of a total of 147 reviews. The average rating is 4.9 / 10. However, the industry journal Variety described the film as "an authentic, impressive spectacle". The Hollywood Reporter criticized the "weak end" and the "hesitant beginning", but admitted that the long middle section was a "rousing good show".

A lot of criticism was that the cast of the main characters consisted of mostly white actors who replaced " People of Color ", such as Moses himself.

The film-dienst said that the “monumental film , which is rampant with enormous show values, is essentially just an action spectacle that deals with the biblical sources quite freely”. The film is "carried over long stretches [...] by the brilliant leading actor, who makes the change of the protagonist from the favorite of power to the rebel leader [...] comprehensible". The staging has “impressive moments”, but remains “but thematically too non-binding in the conventions of the genre”.

Patrick Seyboth from epd Film described the film as a "Bible epic that is also tolerable for agnostics". The obvious danger of "delivering a number revue of the action highlights" is avoided by Scott "only in phases", his film shines "above all with show values ​​in solid, never intrusive 3D". Just as uninspired as the “music by Alberto Iglesias that is bursting with clichés”, “the script [...] uses the motifs that it modeled around the biblical storyline”. History is “up to date” where “the religious core of the story is at stake”. So "Moses [...] could be a madman - and for that very reason the right man at the right time", God could just as well be a hallucination and the figure of Yahweh was "a surprise".

The German Film and Media Assessment (FBW) awarded the film the title “particularly valuable”. In the jury's statement, the “psychodrama between Moses and Ramses” was particularly emphasized, which was “staged in a surprisingly complex and realistic manner”. In addition, the "computer-generated 3D recordings are so detailed and impressive that one is drawn into the suction of the images like rarely in the cinema". Director Scott hardly uses the iconic imagery of the Jewish and Christian tradition, but creates new visions.

Voice actor

The voice actors for the German version:

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Certificate of Release for Exodus: Gods and Kings . Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry , December 2014 (PDF; test number: 148 769 K).
  2. Age designation for Exodus: gods and kings . Youth Media Commission .
  3. Full Cast & Crew . imdb.com. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  4. Start date USA . imdb.com. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  5. start date . fox.de. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  6. ^ Ridley Scott's Exodus film cops complaints about 'racist' casting of Joel Edgerton and Sigourney Weaver
  7. Evelyn Diaz: Ridley Scott's Exodus Accused of Racism. August 8, 2014, accessed January 17, 2016 .
  8. ^ Anne Sewell: 'Exodus': Filmmaker Ridley Scott begins filming in Almeria, Spain . digitaljournal.com. October 24, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  9. Colette Fahy: Christian Bale looks ready for battle as filming on Ridley Scott's biblical epic Exodus gets underway in Spain . dailymail.co.uk. October 23, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  10. ^ Nancy Tartaglione: 'Moses' Calls For Extras In Spain; Masses flock . deadline.com. August 20, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  11. First look: Christian Bale as Mose in Ridley Scott's 'Exodus'
  12. Ridley Scott's 'Exodus' with Christian Bale gets a title change
  13. Ex 12.7–11  EU
  14. Ronen Steinke: Film "Exodus" - Not bibelfest. Sueddeutsche Zeitung, December 29, 2014, accessed on January 14, 2015 .
  15. Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014). Rotten Tomatoes , accessed December 25, 2014 .
  16. Justin Chang : Film Review: 'Exodus: Gods and Kings'. Variety , November 29, 2014, accessed December 20, 2014 : "An improbably Anglo-led cast aside, Ridley Scott's Old Testament epic is a genuinely imposing spectacle."
  17. Stephen Farber, 'Exodus: Gods and Kings': Film Review. The Hollywood Reporter , November 29, 2014, accessed December 20, 2014 (English): “No movie with such a limp ending can be fully satisfying, and the beginning also falters. But the long middle section is a rousing good show. "
  18. ^ NYU Local: Whitewashing - Or Why A Movie Set In Egypt Stars Four White People. December 9, 2014, accessed December 18, 2018 .
  19. ^ Ridley Scott Casts White Men To Play Egyptians, Explains His Choices. August 28, 2014, accessed December 18, 2018 .
  20. Kevin Rawlinson: Rupert Murdoch defends use of white actors in Exodus: Gods and Kings . In: The Guardian . December 1, 2014, ISSN  0261-3077 ( theguardian.com [accessed December 18, 2018]).
  21. http://www.filmdienst.de/kinokritiken/einzelansicht/exodus:-goetter-und-koenige,545021.html (link not available)
  22. Exodus: Gods and Kings. epd film , 12/2014, accessed on April 23, 2015 .
  23. Exodus: Gods and Kings. German Film and Media Rating (FBW) , accessed December 20, 2014 .
  24. synchronkartei.de: Exodus: Gods and Kings. Retrieved December 25, 2014 .