I had a quick look at this movie a couple of months ago. At the time, it was generating a lot of negative feedback due to its… er… unfavourable optics. Gods of Egypt is on general release now, and I think it’s a kindness to say that the reviews are mixed. I went to see it yesterday, and unfortunately, the optics are only part of the problem.
But let’s deal with them first shall we? This has nothing to do with whether or not Hollywood as a whole is doing enough to cast minorities in major roles (if you look at the stats, then they appear to be doing their bit); this is purely about this film, and in this film the casting is a massive issue.
Gods of Egypt is pure fantasy: it’s based around the idea that the Gods of ancient Egypt actually lived in Egypt. They adopted a very ‘hands-on’ management approach to running the world they created, striding around in their perfect ten-feet tall bodies with liquid gold for blood. The film-makers even portrayed the world as flat so that the audience is left in no doubt that none of this actually happened.