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The Ten Commandments (1956)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Biography, Drama  |  5 October 1956 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 45,061 users  
Reviews: 225 user | 86 critic

The Egyptian Prince, Moses, learns of his true heritage as a Hebrew and his divine mission as the deliverer of his people.


(as Cecil B. de Mille)


(this work contains material from the book "Prince of Egypt"), (this work contains material from the book "Pillar of Fire") (as Rev. J. H. Ingraham) , 5 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Olive Deering ...


To escape the edict of Egypt's Pharoah, Rameses I, condemning all newborn Hebrew males, the infant Moses is set adrift on the Nile in a reed basket. Saved by the pharaoh's daughter Bithiah, he is adopted by her and brought up in the court of her brother, Pharaoh Seti. Moses gains Seti's favor and the love of the throne princess Nefertiri, as well as the hatred of Seti's son, Rameses. When his Hebrew heritage is revealed, Moses is cast out of Egypt, and makes his way across the desert where he marries, has a son and is commanded by God to return to Egypt to free the Hebrews from slavery. In Egypt, Moses' fiercest enemy proves to be not Rameses, but someone near to him who can 'harden his heart'. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

egypt | hebrew | pharaoh | desert | well | See All (126) »


Paramount Pictures is proud to announce the return of the greatest motion picture of all time! (1966 re-release) See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

5 October 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Prince of Egypt  »

Box Office


$13,282,712 (estimated)


$80,000,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(1998 re-release)| (1989 re-release)| (35 mm prints)| (Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Final feature film of Luis Alberni. See more »


When Moses was standing on the rock with the Ten Commandments tablets in his hands, he pointed to the Hebrews and said "Blasphemers! Idolaters!", but his lips never opened. See more »


Lilia: [singing] Death cometh to me, to set me free, death cometh to me.
Joshua: No, Lilia. Death will not come to you.
Lilia: Joshua! Joshua, you risk your life in coming here. You are firstborn.
Joshua: So are you. I bring lamb's blood to mark the door posts and lintel... that the Angel of Death may pass you by.
Lilia: Joshua, it is enough that you have come to me. I am outcast among our people. Do not save me from death, Joshua. Save me from life!
Joshua: Tomorrow will bring a new world for us, Lilia!
See more »

Crazy Credits

This film does not end with the credit "The End", but with the written line "So it was written, so it shall be done". See more »


Referenced in Parkinson: Episode dated 7 December 1974 (1974) See more »


Song of Joseph
Written by Henry Noerdlinger
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

I Command You to See this Great Film! ****
11 December 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

What was the Academy of Motion Pictures thinking in 1956? Outrageous that 10 Commandments lost to Around the World in 80 Days.

The entire cast should have been nominated for Oscars. Here is how I see it: Best Actor: Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner

Best Actress: Anne Baxter

Best supporting actor: Edward G. Robinson,Cedric Hardwicke John Derek, Vincent Price. Best Supporting Actress: Nina Foch, Martha Scott, Judith Anderson, Debra Paget.

Shockingly, no one in the stellar cast received acting nominations. Only the lord knows why.

Yes, as my rabbi pointed out many years ago, the alleged romance between the Egyptian queen and Moses was overplayed. However, it can't take away from the magnificent acting and quality of this totally absorbing movie.

They just don't make movies as great as this one anymore. They'd never have actors and actresses to replace the above great people.

In 1956, Brynner did win the best actor Oscar for The King and I. He was far better here. Though, the award should have gone to Kirk Douglas for Lust for Life. Douglas losing, Ten Commandments losing, any message to be learned here? As for the film itself, it should serve as a pre-requisite for those in the industry who wish to make biblical epics. The sets were absolutely lavishing. I guess that opulent would be the best word to describe them. Who can ever forget the dialogue? Remember those princely plots. What alliteration! They just don't open the Red Sea like that anymore.

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