Steven Gaetani 2YY3E
February 9th, 2015
After the game, the king and the pawn go into the same box. While in its most literal sense, this Italian proverb connotes the equalization of all status or power in the end. Yet, while living we all have unequal roles and authority. With this, our essay dives into analyzing the unfairly treated political and ethical issues that humans are faced with during their journey through life. But, in the face of an apocalypse that threatens to wipe out all of mankind, are humans truly equal? Specifically, looking at how the movies Noah and 2012 have a ‘god element’, social class, and faithfulness criteria that determine who and what aboards the lifeboats.
Both movies exemplify action in this life for advancement of greater good in the next. In the film 2012, the elites attempt to preserve artefacts of mankind’s greatest achievements. They believe themselves to be worthy of surviving the Apocalypse while the rest of humanity is extinguished. Despite their sense of self entitlement, they are still vulnerable to the most basic human emotions of guilt and regret. Toward the end of the film, they are faced with the choice of saving a few hundred more at the risk of running out of resources. Dr. Adrian Helmsley was able to convince all the heads of each ark that they should let the people of the damaged ark aboard, as they would be starting the world anew with a horribly cruel act if they did not do so. This, however, merely reflects the notion of the wealthy worrying about their own karma before going into the next life, once again hoping they can get ahead. By contrast, in Noah, God preserves the most faithful, honorable, and humble family to lead the rebirth of mankind. Noah believes he is the chosen one and must save all the animals and wipe out all of mankind due to his visions and flashes of light he sees. Most people would not forsake their friends and neighbours because of instructions from a vision, and most would be encouraged to seek psychological help if they were making decisions based on lights randomly flashing in the sky after asking a question. We now look deeper into how this higher power determines the worthiness of who lives and the criteria they must meet.
Each of the movies show a worthiness to live based on wealth, education, and ethnicity. Are people better because they have more money? Just because they are more fortunate or more economically advanced, does it mean they are more desirable to continue the human race? In 2012, it starts with the scientists finally discovering that massive solar flares are causing the planet’s temperature to rise. At this point, the elite have already been aware of this coming disaster and are building a lifeboat that will live through to the beginning, after the tides have passed. This lifeboat is made up of the highest social class of men and woman around the world with the price of each ticket exceeding one billion dollars. One may justify taking only the wealthiest people aboard by the high cost incurred to create the lifeboats – a quintessential cost for the creation for a powerful stronghold. Some may question if the President did give the same two-year notice to all citizens, whether they would have been able to construct a structure of equivalent strength. In my opinion, most likely the notice of an ending to life would have invoked a sense of hopelessness and everyone would likely turn towards taking out the hatred they have had with the people in their lives, in search for vengeance. By contrast, the movie Noah takes a standpoint of neutrality between social classes and is left the viewer to see good and evil. This makes us look at Noah as a status symbol for helping accomplish the role of God, save the animals and exterminate all human beings. Which leads us to our final thought surrounding whether it is unethical to judge a person on their faith, no…