Judah Ben-Hur lives in Jerusalem with his mother Ruth,sister Tirzah and his friend Messala,illegitimate son of the patrician Roman Marcellus who has virtually disowned the boy. On reaching manhood Messala becomes an officer in the Roman army and is part of a parade headed by governor Pontius Pilate which will march in triumph through Jerusalem to show Roman power. Judah's family watch but accidentally dislodge a tile from the roof which hits Pilate. The family steward David,a Zealot,exploits the accident to start a riot. Seeking to show the governor his power Messala has the family arrested. The women are imprisoned and Simonides,father of Judah's betrothed Esther,crucified - though he survives. Judah is sent as a galley slave in chains and on his way to the ship encounters Jesus. After three years as a galley slave Judah's intelligence impresses the admiral,wealthy Roman Quintus Arrius,and when the ship is involved in a battle with pirates Arrius has Judah's chains unlocked. Ony ... Written by
don @ minifie-1
A pair of youths race with their horse-drawn carts using a track 20 feet constant wide, pretty straight, without a single pothole and with patent signs (and the distinctive marks) of having being smoothed by the blade of a modern grader. See more »
Weak and unnecessary remake of one of the greatest movies ever made
I had misgivings even before watching this one but wanted to check it out nonetheless. I mean, how could they possibly top the 1959 version with Charleton Heston? Answer: they can't! This made for TV version has a weak cast with mediocre acting. The characters that were so memorable and likable in the Charleton Heston version were poorly developed in this one. I couldn't get myself to care about any of them at all, not even the title character. The movie seems hurried throughout and the scenes that were so spectacular in the 1959 version, particularly the galley battle scene and the chariot race, left me utterly disappointed in this one. I would dare say the silent version from 1925 was better than this one. I don't know what the director and producer of this mini series were hoping to accomplish, but whatever it was, they failed miserably. Lew Wallace must have been turning over in his grave, it simply did not do his book justice the same way the previous two film versions did and even the early 1907 version as a matter of fact. I can see the need to make a remake for the silent black and white movie to update with sound and color. And the 1959 MGM Technicolor version was one of the greatest movies ever made. A monumental epic with a cast of thousands, great stars in the leading roles and William Wyler as the director, they just don't make movies like that anymore.
Just like with the remakes of War Of The Worlds and Planet Of The Apes, this remake was totally unnecessary and can't hold a candle to the much better 1959 version. I say: Leave the timeless classics alone! A great movie can stand on it's own without the need for an "updated" version.
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