After settling his differences with a Japanese PoW camp commander, a British colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors - while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it.
Judah Ben-Hur lives as a rich Jewish prince and merchant in Jerusalem at the beginning of the 1st century. Together with the new governor his old friend Messala arrives as commanding officer of the Roman legions. At first they are happy to meet after a long time but their different politic views separate them. During the welcome parade a roof tile falls down from Judah's house and injures the governor. Although Messala knows they are not guilty, he sends Judah to the galleys and throws his mother and sister into prison. But Judah swears to come back and take revenge. Written by
Matthias Scheler <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In the original novel, Ben-Hur's mother does not have a name; she is referred to as Mother of Hur. For the film, she was called Miriam. See more »
A character refers to the Roman Emperor as "The Divine Tiberius." Although Tiberius was never deified in life (it was a posthumous honour), he claimed descent from the Roman deities Jupiter and Venus, so he was "divine" in that sense. Tiberius' successor Caligula claimed in his madness to be all gods at once, and Caligula's successor Claudius I was the first of the office to be formally deified during his lifetime. See more »
[after he is sentenced to the galleys]
May God grant me vengeance! I will pray that you live until I return!
See more »
The Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer lion is shown in a still-frame to appear looking peaceful at the beginning rather than roaring. See more »
There's only one word to describe 'Ben Hur': Epic.
When I first saw 'Ben Hur' (my siblings and I were actually ordered to see it by my father) I was 8 years old and hadn't seen many films, since we were hardly ever allowed to watch television. Imagine what an impact this film had on my fragile little mind (my movie diet had so far consisted of Chaplin and Disney films which, of course, is not at all a bad thing). The experience was simply mesmerizing. Awe and wonder filled me as I watched this story of shocking cruelty, revenge and forgiveness unfold on screen and by the time the chariot race was over, my fate as a future movie addict was sealed.
I've since watched 'Ben Hur' many times, and no doubt, I will watch it many more. From the first scene to the last this film just doesn't let up and immerses you so completely that you hardly feel the 212 minutes running time. And it has a sense of greatness to it that still touches me - now all grown up - and the fantastic action sequences and effects still hold up amazingly well. Pure cinema and a must see 10 stars out of 10.