[rating=4]Starring: 1956 – Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson, Yvonne De Carlo, Nina Foch, Vincent Price; 1923 – Theodore Roberts, Charles de Rochefort, Richard Dix, Rod La Rocque, Leatrice Joy
Director(s): 1956 & 1923 – Cecille B. DeMille
Writer(s): 1956 – Screenplay by Aeneas MacKenzie, Jesse J. Lasky, Jr., Jack Gariss, Fredric M. Frank; Based upon the Holy Scriptures and other ancient and modern writings; 1923 – Story by Jeanie MacPherson
I’m not a religious person, but there is something grand about so many of the sweeping religious epics from the 1950s. The Ten Commandments is a film I’ve probably seen dozens of times, often during the holidays, yet I don’t think I’ve ever actually seen it all the way through in one sitting. That made it all the more epic to watch it unfold in this new, 50th Anniversary edition DVD.
Although he’s been somewhat dismissed in the last few years, Charlton Heston was a powerful actor who so often played larger-than-life characters. And he seemed to love it. He was practically born to play Moses, a role he devoured, even beneath the overdone beard and wig. Modern audiences may have difficulty relating to the style of the film, with its bombastic acting and casual pace, yet it’s a perfect example of the grand filmmaking style of its time.