The Ten Commandments (1923)

Passed   |    |  Biography, Drama, Fantasy


The Ten Commandments (1923) Poster

After hearing the story of Moses, the sons of a devout Christian mother go their own ways, while the atheist brother's breaking of the Ten Commandments leads to tragedy.


7/10
1,737

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  • Nita Naldi in The Ten Commandments (1923)
  • The Ten Commandments (1923)
  • Richard Dix and Leatrice Joy in The Ten Commandments (1923)
  • The Ten Commandments (1923)
  • Leatrice Joy and Rod La Rocque in The Ten Commandments (1923)
  • Richard Dix and Leatrice Joy in The Ten Commandments (1923)

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Cast & Crew

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Director:

Cecil B. DeMille

Writer:

Jeanie Macpherson (story)

Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews


21 September 2004 | Snow Leopard
Interesting, & Occasionally Impressive
It's interesting just to watch DeMille's first, silent film version of "The Ten Commandments", and the picture itself is pretty interesting too. It is also occasionally impressive, sometimes with the kind of DeMille flourishes that one expects, sometimes with a satisfying dramatic turn. It's quite different in its conception from the more familiar 1950's version, and so direct comparisons are not always possible, yet it holds up well by itself anyway.

Rather than concentrating on the biblical story, as in the remake, here DeMille first tells an abbreviated version of the Moses/Exodus narrative, and then uses it as the thematic basis for a modern morality tale. There are many parallels between the two stories, and while the parallels are occasionally forced, they often work surprisingly well. The modern-day story is similar to many other films of the 1910's and 1920's, but it is interesting and it is told well.

Although DeMille is known for his lavish spectacles, he also knew how to create some more subtle effects when he wanted to. In the modern story, some of the developments are a bit contrived, but the characters generally ring true, and the story itself is worthwhile as well. While the lavish remake with color and sound is probably going to remain more well-known, this earlier version is well worth seeing, too.

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