Wednesday, April 11, 2012

"Ben-Hur" (1959)

Ben-Hur is one of those classics that takes today’s audiences a bit of effort to work through. It is, after all, over 60 years old and styles have changed with the times. This epic is slowly paced, the sets a bit too perfect and unreal, and the acting… well obviously acted.

Still, the influence on today is obvious. There is no question why this film won so many awards and recognition, why it is so well respected still. Watch this today and you see that the best part of the Star Wars prequels had already been done!

Where the award lies is after the events in the circus: when Judah discovers his mother and sister are still alive but lepers, when he hears again about the man who gave him water when he was a prisoner, and when the message of the Messiah changes his heart. You would be hard pressed to get this sort of message from a main stream film today. It is positive, but not altogether satisfying.

Why is it, that pop-culture always gives us the story of the cross without the story of the empty grave? Is it that they did not have a problem with Christ’s ideals, but did with His divinity?

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