Tim Purtell
March 05, 2004 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Ten Commandments: Special Collector's Edition

Current Status
In Season
Anne Baxter, Yul Brynner, Charlton Heston

We gave it a B+

Okay, we’ve all seen Cecil B. DeMille’s epic umpteen times on Easter and let’s be clear: This is not a masterwork with subtle, Leanian shadings or deep subtexts. It’s well-made, kitschy fun put across by special effects that retain a thrilling visual power and a cast that knew exactly how to serve up the ham. EXTRAS According to the sometimes over-reverential commentary, William Holden was nixed for Brynner, who looked better bald (good decision). Audrey Hepburn lost out to Baxter because her twiggy figure didn’t amply fill out the filigree costumes. Though Moses apparently stuttered in real life, DeMille decided it wouldn’t work to have Heston do the same (another good decision). And most fascinatingly of all, that’s popcorn falling on Brynner in the plague-of-hail sequence. How appropriate!

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