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Home > The Ten Commandments Two-Disc Special Edition
The Ten Commandments Two-Disc Special Edition
The Ten Commandments Two-Disc Special Edition


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Sales Rank: 916

Actors: Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson, Yvonne De Carlo
Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Rating: G
Features: AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, DVD, Restored, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
Running Time: 220 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Release Date: March 29, 2011
Theatrical Release Date: 1956
Studio: Paramount

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• 2-Disc Set
• Meticulously Restored
• 55th Anniversary

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"?
Legendary silent film director Cecil B. DeMille didn't much alter the way he made movies after sound came in, and this 1956 biblical drama is proof of that. While graced with such 1950s niceties as VistaVision and Technicolor, The Ten Commandments DeMille had already filmed an earlier version in 1923 has an anachronistic, impassioned style that finds lead actors Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner expressively posing while hundreds of extras writhe either in the presence of God's power or from orgiastic heat. DeMille, as always, plays both sides of the fence as far as sin goes, surrounding Heston's Moses with worshipful music and heavenly special effects while also making the sexy action around the cult of the Golden Calf look like fun. You have to see The Ten Commandments to understand its peculiar resonance as an old-new movie, complete with several still-impressive effects such as the parting of the Red Sea. --Tom Keogh

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