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The Ten Commandments (1956)

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

Director:

Cecil B. DeMille (as Cecil B. de Mille)

Writers:

Dorothy Clarke Wilson (this work contains material from the book "Prince of Egypt"), J.H. Ingraham (this work contains material from the book "Pillar of Fire") (as Rev. J. H. Ingraham) | 5 more credits »
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Popularity
3,069 ( 331)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charlton Heston ... Moses
Yul Brynner ... Rameses
Anne Baxter ... Nefretiri
Edward G. Robinson ... Dathan
Yvonne De Carlo ... Sephora
Debra Paget ... Lilia
John Derek ... Joshua
Cedric Hardwicke ... Sethi (as Sir Cedric Hardwicke)
Nina Foch ... Bithiah
Martha Scott ... Yochabel
Judith Anderson ... Memnet
Vincent Price ... Baka
John Carradine ... Aaron
Olive Deering ... Miriam
Douglass Dumbrille ... Jannes
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Storyline

To escape the edict of Egypt's Pharaoh, 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

Taglines:

The Greatest Event in Motion Picture History See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 October 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Prince of Egypt See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,282,712 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$93,740,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$196,344,381
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Roadshow Version)

Sound Mix:

Stereo (Western Electric Recording)| Mono (optical prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (1989 re-release)| Dolby Stereo (1989 re-release)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Until The Passion of the Christ (2004), this film was the highest-grossing religious epic in history, earning over $65.5 million, over $587 million in 2016 dollars. See more »

Goofs

The Red Sea changes color many times while it's being parted. At times it appears blue, green, and even gray. In later TV and DVD releases, the Red Sea becomes deep blue in color without a hint of green. See more »

Quotes

Yochabel: God of Abraham, take my child into Thy hands that he may live to Thy service.
[Little Miriam bowed her head and prayed silently, while Yochabel prayed verbally]
Little Miriam: But, mother, we have not even given him a name.
Yochabel: God will give him a name.
[after speaking, Yochabel then gently, slowly and carefully pushed the basket, towards the Egyptian palace and Nile River]
Yochabel: Follow it, Miriam. Watch it from the reeds. See where the Lord will lead him.
Little Miriam: [...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Paramount mountain was replaced with Mount Sinai and the sky is red, also. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Prologue and intermission music have been included in the 2004 DVD release. These are taken out on all network TV showings to cut down the length. Also edited out of network showings is an Overture which has also been restored to the DVD release. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mike & Mike: Episode dated 6 May 2016 (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Lilia's Song
(uncredited)
Music by Elmer Bernstein
Lyrics by Henry Wilcoxon
Performed by Debra Paget
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I Command You to See this Great Film! ****
11 December 2005 | by edwagreenSee 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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