7.1/10
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110 user 41 critic

King of Kings (1961)

The temporary physical life of everyone's Savior, Jesus Christ.

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

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Edric Connor ...
Balthazar
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Storyline

The story of the life of Jesus Christ from his birth in Bethlehem to his crucifixion and subsequent resurrection. Filmed on a relatively grand scale, the film includes all of the major events referred to in the New Testament; his baptism by John the Baptist; the miracles - cripples walking, blind men seeing; the fishes and the loaves; and so on. The film actually begins with the Roman invasion by Pompey in 65 B.C., the appointment of King Herod the Great by the Romans and finally the crowning of Herod Antipas after he murders his father. The revolt led by Barrabas is also included and John the Baptist's beheading as Salome's price for dancing for Herod. Written by garykmcd

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Taglines:

The Power - The Passion - The Greatness - The Glory See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

30 October 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Samuel Bronston's Production King of Kings  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,037,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$14,483,352

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$25,000,000, 31 January 1989
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35mm prints)| (70 mm prints) (Westrex Recording System)| (35 mm prints) (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's narrator, Orson Welles, would later narrate a portion of another Biblical work, The New Media Bible: Book of Genesis (1979). Before narrating this Biblical epic about the King of kings, Welles had earlier portrayed a king himself in another Biblical epic, David and Goliath (1960). Welles would even portray a director directing a Biblical epic in Ro.Go.Pa.G. (1963), when he ironically had earlier directed himself in his own scenes in "David e Golia". See more »

Goofs

The killing of the newborns in Bethlehem is carried out by Roman soldiers. In reality the Roman Army had no units stationed in Judea until AD6, two years after Herod the Great's death (when it became a full province of the Roman Empire rather than a client kingdom). Instead, the massacre would have been carried out by Herod's own troops, who were a mixture of Jews, Samaritans and foreign mercenaries. See more »

Quotes

Pontius Pilate: [In Jerusalem, Pilate and Lucius are concerned Barabbas may be planning an uprising] How many followers has he?
Lucius: Who? God, Jesus, or Barabbas?
Pontius Pilate: Barabbas.
Lucius: How many dissatisfied Jews are there in Jerusalem?
Pontius Pilate: Have you considered the possibility of the followers of Jesus and Barabbas joining forces?
Lucius: I have.
Pontius Pilate: Where would it happen?
Lucius: Since we are here... here!
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Connections

Spoofed in Life of Brian (1979) See more »

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User Reviews

 
a film worthy of its subject (the life of Christ)
15 December 2004 | by See all my reviews

Check this out over the boring "Greatest Story Ever Told" any day. The entire cast right down to the bit players who portray the beneficiaries of Jesus healing are all effective and extremely moving. The script moves quickly and adeptly between story lines involving a Jewish insurgency against the Romans, King Herod's court, and the story of Jesus Christ. King of Kings may or may not be historically accurate, but makes for great entertainment. That said, the scenes with Jesus are almost all derived from the Gospel. Jeffrey Hunter is an excellent Jesus,emphasizing the gentleness and conveying the inner spiritual strength that the real Jesus must have possessed.Another of the many acting highlights is Brigid Bazlen as a wickedly sexy Salome. I can't fail to mention the Oscar worthy performance of Rip Torn as the spiritually "torn" Judas. Fans of the Larry Sanders Show should look for Torn in another overlooked performance in the movie "Pay Day". I believe Martin Scorsese said Jesus must have been the equivalent of a rock star in his time and this film affirms that idea.

This movie has something for everyone and scores on many different levels. First as historical fiction it's compellingly told,second there's plenty of heroic action involving Barrabas uprising against the Romans, and then the moving display of mysticism involving the scenes with Jeffrey Hunter (Jesus) and the inspiring majestic score of Miklos Roza. Nicholas Ray an unlikely choice for director tackles the subject with aplomb.


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