17 April 2017 | ma-cortes
Silent and stunning version about the known hero set in the Roman empire at the time of Christ
Nice silent rendition that still stands as the all-time silent classic , including marvelously staged battle ships and overwhelming chariot races . It packs impressive scenes that still look nice , in spite of age . Childhood friends , Judah Ben-Hur (Ramon Novarro) and Messala (Francis X Bushman) meet again one time grown-up . Now as experienced adults , this time Messala is a Roman officer , a tough conqueror against the Jews and Judah as a rich noble , though conquered , Israelite . When in Jerusalem takes place a Roman parade , spontaneously falling a brick that causes Judah to be sent off as a galley slave , his ownership confiscated and his mother and sister Tirzah (Kathleen Key) imprisoned at an impregnable jail . But the brave Ben Hur goes on his determination to stay alive and saves the Roman general Quinto Arrio when they are attacked by a pirate galleon , and he , then , becomes his fostered son . Several years later Judah goes backs his homeland . Unable to locate his mummy and sister, and believing them dead , he can think of nothing else than vendetta against Messala . Meanwhile , Ben Hur falls for Esther (May McAvoy) , daughter of Simonides (Nigel Of Brulier) .
The second movie of the acclaimed novel , being lavishly produced , stars Ramón Novarro and Francis X. Buxman as Messala . Novarro is good in the known role as wealthy Palestinan battling the Roman Empire . The chariot race required thousands of extras on sets constructed on lots of acres of backlot at Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios . The MGM production costs were massive millions of dollars , as a lot of chariots were built , with half being used for practice . The race took various weeks to film . The known chariot scene was shot at what is now the intersection of La Cienega and Venice Boulevards in Los Angeles . Although problems lingered on the production and at a cost of over 4.000.000 dollars . The initial Italian set was eventually torn down and a new one built in Culver City , California . Attractive images , majestic set design , glamorous photography in black and white , evocative as well as rousing musical score subsequently added by the great composer Carl Davis combine to cast a spellbinding movie . The motion picture was stunningly realized by director Fred Niblo helped by Second-unit director B. Reeves Eason and Cliff Lyons ; being a hit smash at the box office . In 1931 , a shortened version was released . Rating : 8 , extraordinary and awesome , it ranked as the most expensive movie of its time and took years to end ; it is one of the greatest films in the genre "Epic". Ben-Hur still stands as the all-time silent classic .
Other retellings based on this vintage novel written by Lewis Wallace are the followings : The classic version ¨Ben-Hur¨ won a record 11 Ocars , directed by William Wyler with Charlton Heston , Stephen Boyd , Haya Harareet , Jack Hawkins , Sam Jaffe , Finlay Currie , Martha Scott , Cathy O'Donnell , in which stuntman Cliff Lyons worked a Stuntman/chariot driver in both versions : 1925 and 1959 ; cartoon version (2003) by Bill Kowalchuck with prologue by Charlton Heston and ¨Ben-Hur¨ TV series by Steven Shrill with Joseph Morgan , Stephen Campbell Moore , Kristen Krouk , Simon Andreu and Lucia Jimenez