A grieving widow at risk of losing more family members, Naomi is confused and disillusioned to her Jewish faith as she resides in a pagan country. When her two sons die, Naomi makes up her mind to return to her homeland in disgrace. One daughter-in-law, Orpah, turns away and goes back to her idols, but Naomi’s other daughter-in-law, Ruth, insists on going to the land of Israel with her mother-in-law to further adapt the Jewish faith and to take care of Naomi. Together, they are uncertain of the path ahead of them but they forge forward, clinging to some hope that Yahweh will look upon them with favor.
Production Quality (.5 point)
Besides clear video quality, there is nothing positive to mention regarding The Book of Ruth’s production. This film commits every cardinal sin of Bible movies: cheap sets and locations, ridiculous costuming and props, inconsistent sound quality, and choppy editing. To top things off, a lot of scenes are overshadowed by annoying background music, making it hard to focus on what’s actually going on in the story. Sometimes the music even covers up dialogue. There is really little to make this movie worth watching.
Plot and Storyline Quality (0 points)
The story of Ruth can and should be adapted to film, but this particular adaptation is just C-grade. Beginning with Oded telling the story to a young David, this tale portrays Biblical characters in an unrealistic light. It is usually difficult to understand what the characters are supposed to be doing in this movie, whether they are staring at flowers or rubbing random pieces of wood together. It doesn’t even seem like this plot was meant to be a movie, more like a church play, as we have often mentioned in the past regarding PureFlix Scriptural storylines. Any potentially good dialogue is eclipsed by odd monologues about Moabite gods and inventive cultural customs. As previously mentioned, a lot of the dialogue and plot is covered up by loud background music. In short, there is very little ability to comprehend the actual Biblical message here.
Acting Quality (0 points)
In this film, the actors and actresses stand awkwardly and recite overly practiced lines. No believable emotion is exhibited and line delivery is amateurishly theatrical. The casting was poorly executed, as they are too modern in look and not coached at all. There is too much makeup and manicures, like middle class Americans wrapped in cheap church play costumes. Once again, we could find nothing positive here.
The Book of Ruth is one of those movies we wish never existed. When a Biblical adaptation is this bad, it makes us severely embarrassed for both Christians and unbelievers alike who thought this movie would be good, only to later find that it was a DVD that should have been quietly forgotten about and later donated to the local thrift store. A word of advice to those who are contemplating a Bible movie: learn from the mistakes of movies like The Book of Ruth and never, ever repeat them. The Christian movie world cannot afford any more movies like this one.