HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Worst Person in the World, The
Whirlpool
Hunter Will Get You
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Revolver
Men, The
Parallel Mothers
Sadness, The
Bloody New Year
Faye
Body Count
Spider-Man: No Way Home
'Round Midnight
Wild Men
Barry & Joan
Wake Up Punk
Twin, The
Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy
One of These Days
Lift to the Scaffold
Savage Dawn
Rest in Pieces
Innocents in Paris
We're All Going to the World's Fair
Beyond the Door 3
Jules et Jim
Love Jones
Saint-Narcisse
Souvenir Part II, The
Knockabout
400 Blows, The
Virus: 32
Studio 666
Great Movement, The
Lost in La Mancha
Cellar, The
Sacred Spirit, The
Chess of the Wind
Nineteen Eighty-Four
Scream
   
 
Newest Articles
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
   
 
  Ten Commandments, The Delivery Man
Year: 1956
Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Stars: Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson, Yvonne De Carlo, Debra Paget, John Derek, Cedric Hardwicke, Nina Foch, Martha Scott, Judith Anderson, Vincent Price, John Carradine, Olive Deering, Douglass Dumbrille, Woody Strode
Genre: Historical, FantasyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 2 votes)
Review: The Pharoah of Egypt has decreed that to prevent any saviour rising from the ranks of the Hebrew slaves the Egyptians rely on to build their cities, all the first born, male children should be put to death. One mother works out a way of sparing her infant by placing him in a basket and setting him adrift on the waters of the Nile. The baby's sister watches him to see where the basket heads, and as she wades through the rushes, she realises that it has been picked up by the Pharoah's daughter Bithiah (Nina Foch), who is so enchanted by the find that she claims the child as her own. Her servant Memnet (Judith Anderson) warns of repercussions as she notes from the swaddling clothes that the child is Hebrew, but Bithiah will hear none of it, and years later, Moses (Charlton Heston) is a prince of Egypt, with only the rivalry of his brother Rameses (Yul Brynner) standing in his way of taking his place as the next Pharoah...

For his final film, Cecil B. DeMille - who was probably the most famous producer and director of his age - deigned to remake one of his earlier hits. Now, The Ten Commandments of the nineteen-twenties had been a pretty long film at over two hours, but apparently it wasn't enough for Cecil, and this new version lasted almost four hours. You can see why he went back to the Biblical tale, as in his original attempt Moses and the Exodus had only taken up the first half of the film, the other part being a contemporary and pious story of two brothers, one righteous and the other a blasphemer. It was leavened by a spot of New Testament message, but in 1956 it was Old Testament all the way.

In his signature performance, Heston marked himself as the man to go to for earth shattering significance, and he speaks the frequently ridiculous dialogue with admirable conviction. Brynner is his equal, even making you feel sorry for Rameses despite his proudly evil ways, and as Nefretiri, the woman who comes between them, Anne Baxter is a lot of fun in a bad girl role. Those phoney, Biblical sounding lines groan with portentousness and can be highly amusing to listen to (my favourite line being, "God opens the sea with a blast of his nostrils!" - Charlton should have landed that line for himself), but the overall feeling is of great weight that makes watching it something of a trudge.

In fact, it's over two hours until Moses catches sight of the burning bush, and after he does it's intermission time. If you're looking forward to seeing the special effects bringing the plagues and parting of the Red Sea to life, then you'll have a long wait. In the meantime, Moses must reconcile his life as a pampered prince with his newfound knowledge that he is in fact Jewish, and his people toil under the cruel yoke of slavery. When he receives this news, he seeks out his true mother, and makes a major decision: rather than lay claim to the throne, he will give it up and work as a slave. Rameses has been hearing mutterings of the Hebrews waiting for a "deliverer", and it doesn't take him long to figure out who that is.

Nefretiri wants Moses to return to his old life, as she now has to marry Rameses instead. The prince sends Moses away lest he cause trouble, and the outcast spends days and nights in the wilderness until he is found by a family of Bedouins, including Sephora (Yvonne De Carlo looking luminous) who becomes his wife. But the call of the Israelites cannot be ignored... Although there's a lot in The Ten Commandments that can be regarded as campy, there's one thing it takes commendably seriously and that's the death of the first born that God visits on the Egyptians. This helps to emphasise the uncompromising nature of the deity, and adds a depth of emotion too, but it's the spectacle most will be wanting to enjoy, and John P. Fulton's Oscar-winning effects work is generally superb, especially the most famous sequence of crossing the Red Sea. However, the final act does make it look as if the Hebrews were an ungrateful bunch to the extent of rejecting their God and their saviour after all they had done, which must have made this Moses wonder why he bothered. Music by Elmer Bernstein.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 6888 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Enoch Sneed
   

 

Last Updated: