Sunday, February 28, 2016

Gods Of Egypt: Movie Vs. Mythology

review by Tami Jackson

Doesn't matter if you ordered a super large soft drink and get free refills on your popcorn. You won't be getting out of your seat during this 100 minute thrilling fantasy film; not even to take a bathroom break or to make a phone call to make sure the babysitter's not tied up with a computer cord and locked in the linen closet.
Human Thief Bek Holding Falcon God Horus' Eye

Gods of Egypt (2016) is busting with action, adventure, violent (testosterone laden) themes. Male and female actors alike flaunt their breathtakingly gorgeous bodies and the computer animation and camera angles and sound affects are all superb. The movie is even GREATER when it gets people wanting to study mythology!

Parts of this flick that match old records include a greedy and cruel-God named Set. True to old depictions, he is constantly scheming to gain more power and wants to take full control of Egypt. He often engages in violent conflict  with other gods - even to murder them so he can rob them of their special powers.

A second God, Horus, hopes to restore Egypt to the equilibrium it once enjoyed under his father Osiris's rule. That's why Horus takes on the task of fighting his evil uncle Set even after Set has amassed so many talents and godly powers his destruction seems impossible.

... And that's pretty much where the movie departs from the mythological story. In the end, both myth and movie pretty much end the same way with Horus ... oh wait. We don't want to offer any spoilers here!


First and foremost, the film completely disempowers women/Goddesses and presents them as much weaker than their male counterparts. In myth, Goddesses often outsmart and win their battles over deviant male gods. 

Feminists and Pagans be warned. In the movie, Goddesses are valued for their beauty and sexual prowess but pretty much fail completely as warriors. This "Gods of Egypt" movie tends to objectify the Goddess and I'm quite sure that will come as a huge disappointment to Goddess worshippers and historians alike.

Even Goddess Isis, who was revered world-wide, who some still say is the greatest Goddess ever known, is barely even mentioned in the movie and she's not a character you will recognize in it. That's when the old time story conveys how she was so hugely involved in her son Horus' life, she influenced his reign, repeatedly interfered in his dealings (sometimes to his dismay) and most often protected him. Not telling the Isis connection to the battle between Set and Horus is like not giving the Christian God any recognition for the life story, the inheritance or resurrection of Jesus Christ. 


According to the ancient records, Horus never met his father Osiris (and Osiris was not murdered during the process of crowning his son king). The old records would show Goddess Isis being impregnated by Osiris posthumously.

Through a series of Set's horrible deeds, Osiris was murdered and his body cut into many pieces and his body parts spread far and wide. It was only through Goddess Isis' undying love for him that she tirelessly searched the world over for all of her husband's dismembered parts. Some records say a catfish ate his fleshy penis and others claim it was a crab. Nonetheless, with no phallus to be salvaged, Isis crafted one from gold. Then, after much scheming and witchcraft, she raised her husband from the dead.


The newly-fashioned Osiris was never the powerful God he was before his murder and Horus grew up without his dad and with a sometimes too-doting Goddess for a mother who often interfered with his every affair. Thank Isis, though, because she often saved Horus in his dangerous battles and kept him alive long enough to save Egypt from the ruling tyrant.

The movie also bastardized Set's marital relationship to his sister Nephthys. It's true the couple was barren but some records suggest it was Set who was sterile, not his wife. To conceive a child, some versions of the story say that Nephthys transformed herself to look like Isis and slept with Osiris (prior to his dismemberment) in order to conceive. Her unfaithfulness is what caused Set's hatred of her. The movie depicts Set despising Nephthys for her sterility; caused by a curse.

If the movie had been true to mythology it would have shown Isis as the power behind Horus' rise to power. Instead, Amentet, Egyptian Goddess of the West, who welcomed the dead to the underworld with food and water, who is also the Goddess of fertility and rebirth - she is portrayed as the Goddess of Love and mistress to Horus. In the film she is made somewhat powerless next to Set and made his sex-slave.


Release date: February 26, 2016
Rating: PG-13
Director: Alex Proyas, Australian who also directed "The Crow" (1994), "Dark City" (1998), "I, Robot" (2004).

Budget: $140,000,000 


Goddess Isis (Very involved in myth - but not in the movie. Damnit!)
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Falcon God Horus)
Brenton Thwaites (Human/Thief named Bek - not a character in mythology)
Chadwick Boseman (Messenger God Thoth)
Elodie Yung (Goddess Hathor)
Courtney Eaton (Zaya - love interest of Thief Bek)
Rufus Sewell (Urshu; human architect for Set)
Gerard Butler (Set; God of disorder and of deserts)
Geoffrey Rush (Sun God Ra)
Bryan Brown (God Osiris - Horus' Father)

Emma Booth (Nephthys - Set's wife/sister)
Alexander England (Mnevis - the sacred bull deity)
Goran D. Kleut (Anubis God of the Underworld: guardian and protector of the dead)
Yaya Deng (Astarte, War Goddess, historically depicted on horseback, shown riding a huge caterpillar-type creature in the movie)
Kenneth Ransom (Sphinx)

1 comment:

  1. The winged God who's wielding a golden scepter with his right hand isn't Horus, he's Set.
    Also the movie is faithful to egyptian myths: after being questioned by His son about the inability to breed, Ra states he made Set sterile purposefully.


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