The Ten CommandmentsDirector: Cecil B. DeMille
Based on the Holy Scriptures, with additional dialogue by several other hands, The Ten Commandments was the last film directed by Cecil B. DeMille. The story relates the life of Moses, from the time he was discovered in the bullrushes as an infant by the pharoah's daughter, to his long, hard struggle to free the Hebrews from their slavery at the hands of the Egyptians. Moses (Charlton Heston) starts out "in solid" as Pharoah's adopted son (and a whiz at designing pyramids, dispensing such construction-site advice as "Blood makes poor mortar"), but when he discovers his true Hebrew heritage, he attempts to make life easier for his people. Banished by his jealous half-brother Rameses (Yul Brynner), Moses returns fully bearded to Pharoah's court, warning that he's had a message from God and that the Egyptians had better free the Hebrews post-haste if they know what's good for them. Only after the Deadly Plagues have decimated Egypt does Rameses give in. As the Hebrews reach the Red Sea, they discover that Rameses has gone back on his word and plans to have them all killed. But Moses rescues his people with a little Divine legerdemain by parting the Seas. Later, Moses is again confronted by God on Mt. Sinai, who delivers unto him the Ten Commandments. Meanwhile, the Hebrews, led by the duplicitous Dathan (Edward G. Robinson), are forgetting their religion and behaving like libertines. "Where's your Moses now?" brays Dathan in the manner of a Lower East Side gangster. He soon finds out. A remake of his 1923 silent film, DeMille's The Ten Commandments may not be the most subtle and sophisticated entertainment ever concocted, but it tells its story with a clarity and vitality that few Biblical scholars have ever been able to duplicate. It is very likely the most eventful 219 minutes ever recorded to film -- and who's to say that Nefertiri (Anne Baxter) didn't make speeches like, "Oh, Moses, Moses, you splendid, stubborn, adorable fool"?
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- Original Release:
- Paramount Catalog
Cast & Crew
|Cecil B. DeMille||Director,Producer|
|Elmer Bernstein||Score Composer|
|Sam Comer||Set Decoration/Design|
|Fredric M. Frank||Screenwriter|
|John P. Fulton||Special Effects|
|Edith Head||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Dorothy Jeakins||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|John Jensen||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Ralph Jester||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|W. Wallace Kelley||Cinematographer|
|J. Peverell Marley||Cinematographer|
|Ray Moyer||Production Designer,Set Decoration/Design|
|Albert Nozaki||Production Designer|
|Hal Pereira||Production Designer|
|LeRoy J. Prinz||Choreography|
|Walter Tyler||Art Director|
|John F. Warren||Cinematographer|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I would like to say that Cecil B. DeMil directed this movie in excellence, and that both of the main characters, Moses and Ramsese, were brilliantly potrayed by Charelton Heston, and Yul Bryyner! The special effects were of excellent quality too, still able to astound the audiences of today's high budget films! The Ten Commandments is a must for all Christian movie collectors!
The Ten Commandments is one of the best movies you will ever see. The special effects are as good as the modern techniques of today. Maybe even better. The story is full of adventure, love, and the persuit for freedom. This is a movie you can enjoy with your whole family.
The smug, petulant, critical complaints that ¿The Ten Commandments¿ suffers from historical and Biblical inaccuracies, over-the-top scripting and the occasional scenery-chewing bout of overacting are looking the wrong direction. The Bible according to Cecil B. DeMille is not the NIV, it isn¿t the Septuagint, and it surely isn¿t the King James Bible. DeMille¿s vision of the Bible is derived from 19th Century steel engravings and early 20th Century color Sunday School quarterly illustrations¿DeMille worked in bright primary colors because those were the colors his audience understood as good and right for the subject he was embracing. He created spectacles because he and his audience understood spectacular themes¿-DeMille¿s world was not pessimistic about its own time and future in the way 21st Century America is. Mid-century Americans movies reflect the exuberant optimism we knew in those days and they are better for it. If a DeMille Bible epic perhaps got a more than healthy dose of Hollywood style romance, that had less to do with DeMille¿s agenda and a lot more to do with the expectations that an audience brought to the theatre with them. These movies were never about a simple, quiet faith¿DeMille¿s view of the Bible was heroic and triumphant. He saw the Bible¿s stories as grand tales, and filmed them as spectacular events no less bright than the colors and costumes he dressed the actors and scenes with. If it ¿The Ten Commandments¿ was occasionally gaudy, well, that was not viewed as a particular sin. ¿The Ten Commandments¿ is far bigger than its current lot of self-complacent critics. There are moments of high camp in this movies; it is also likely that virtually every other complaint someone might make about the movie is true. However, the people who feel they have to hold their noses to view it (for whatever reason) have no business watching in the first place, that part of the audience does not measure the movie; it measures them. In making this epic, DeMille created a lasting document that is already long-proven; as this review is being written, ¿The Ten Commandments¿ is close upon a half-century¿s vintage and still enjoys a huge popularity. To many people, it is a vastly religious document despite any flaws they see, and to those people for whom it is only a good movie, well, they¿re not wrong either. This is mid-century filmmaking at its best. So, stop complaining, pass me the popcorn, and enjoy the show.
The movie has touched my heart,mind and soul...Every actor has done justice to his/her respective role.A must see flick for young and old! Awesome!!!!!!!
Cecil DeMille's Ten Commandements presents to the modern viewer a magnificent story of faith and the guidance of Divine Providence. The film was made with reverence to the Scriptures and the period of history which it covers. Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner portray their characters in such a way as to only deserve praise. It's a wonderful classic to add to your collection, and I give it five stars.
'The Ten Commandments: Special Edition' is one of the 1950s big budget elephantine Biblical epics with more spectacle than heart. It¿s full of pomp and circumstance, filled to the tip of the pyramids with an all star roster that must have tipped the budgetary scales over at Paramount, and completely overdone beyond all legitimate theater. The story charts the spiritual growth of Moses (Charlton Heston) as he matures into the stark reality that he is not of noble Egyptian blood. This, of course, eventually leads Moses on the righteous path to God as he frees the slaves from bondage. Also featured in this all star cast are Yul Brynner as Ramses, the Pharaoh¿s ruthless first born, Edward G. Robinson, looking rather effeminate in his toga as Nathan, the overseer, Nina Foch as The Princess with a secret to keep and - (chuckle, chuckle) Vincent Price as Backa, the master builder - very effeminate in his Egyptian toga and gaudy head gear. Dame Judith Anderson is effective as Memnet and Sir Cedric Hardwick is particularly poignant as Ramses the first. The production is monumental but stale, thanks to some rather obvious matte process shots and really simplistic animation that is easily spotted and distracting from the otherwise dry performances. Honestly, does anyone think the pillar of fire or burning hale look real? This film is the perennial Easter fav' amongst secular Christians, but for my money the average DVD consumer will be much more emotionally satisfied with BEN-HUR. That goes double for the transfer quality of this DVD. This is the same transfer as the previously issued and reviewed disc. It is riddled with edge enhancement, shimmering of fine details and pixelization that thoroughly distract from the visual presentation. Although colors are bold, rich and vibrant and black and contrast levels are deep - with fine detail evident throughout - the digital anomalies on both discs totally undercuts its assets in picture quality. The audio is a 5.1 remix and generally engaging in its spread. EXTRAS: We get a 6 part documentary that - like those featured on Paramount's 'Once Upon The Time In The Old West' - would have been better edited into one documentary instead of 6 featurettes. There's also an audio commentary that's - well, flat and uninspiring - unlike the film's subject matter. BOTTOM LINE: After providing us with stunning digital transfers of 'Sunset Blvd.' and 'Roman Holiday' I sort of thought Paramount Home Video had turned over a new leaf. They haven't. This transfer is unworthy of the moniker 'Special Edition' and it just goes to show that classics continue to get shafted over at Paramount. For shame!
What is all the hype about?? I fail to see what the big deal is with this film. I know this was made before I was born but c'mon, I've seen Downy commercials with more believable acting than this garbage. Mr. Heston was so blah. I wouldn't wish this movie on my worst enemy.