Ben Hur Miniseries (2013) / Ben Hur Movie (2016) 2 DVD's 5 Hours - Joseph Morgan, Stephen Moore, Emily VanCamp, Kristin Kreuk, Ray Winstone, Jack Huston, Toby Kebbell, Morgan Freeman, Rodrigo Santoro
Ben Hur: The Epic Miniseries Event
In this new adaptation of the colossal classic, Ben Hur the mini-series delivers more action, passion and revenge than ever before. The timeless story follows two friends who become bitter enemies and the historic events of the time as told through the eyes of Judah Ben-Hur. Born a wealthy Jewish merchant's son, he is destined to live many lives: a powerful businessman, a dutiful slave, a fierce gladiator, a Roman nobleman, and finally...a conquering hero. This extraordinary adventure-filled saga is the historic epic for a new generation.
Fate and adventure collide in the ""epic and awe-inspiring"" (Mark S. Allen, ABC) story of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston), a prince who is enslaved by the Romans after being betrayed by his adopted brother Messala (Toby Kebbell). Separated from his family and the woman he loves, Ben-Hur is rescued from near death by the mysterious Ilderim (Morgan Freeman). He returns to his homeland seeking revenge against his brother and an empire, but instead he finds a chance for redemption. This ""powerful, action-packed film"" (Annalisa Blanco, KDVR-TV FOX) is ""an exhilarating must see!"" (Emily Engberg, KSTP-TV ABC)
- Package Dimensions : 19.1 x 13.69 x 1.7 cm; 68 Grams
- Run time : 317 minutes
- Subtitles: : English, French, Spanish
- ASIN : B09D9XXTLJ
- Number of discs : 2
- Best Sellers Rank: 62,793 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- 48,104 in Movies (Movies & TV)
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Born to fail after the surely definitive 1959 film version, Charlton Heston's Ben Hur impossible to match? Judged on its own merits, this 2010 production has much to offer, especially to fans of "The Originals", Joseph Morgan's later triumph. His Ben Hur is of far slighter build. Some may say this makes the various triumphs over formidable challenges rather more satisfying. More controversially some may also claim this of the chariot race itself - it a more local affair, with not much more to come. (The film's version was breathtakingly spectacular, but there was still a lot of film to follow, it dragging somewhat.)
Where this television adaptation disappointingly misses out is in "A Tale of the Christ" aspect. The 1959 film stressed the links between Jesus and Ben Hur - born at the same time, both thought to be The Promised One, their brief encounters very moving indeed, help on the road to Calvary resulting in a miracle as gratitude. This new version sadly misses much by not giving such matters similar emphasis.
Despite such reservations this version was enjoyed - not least because of unexpected names amongst the cast. Chief of these was Joseph Morgan himself - a portrayal gaining stature as challenges threatened. Also ever present was a vulnerability very moving - demonstrated in his final scene with Messala. Time to gloat, or for sad reflection on how life so easily could have been otherwise?
I've not yet seen the 2016 version, which looks aimed at rivalling Charlton Heston's version (which is an all time top-10 Great Film of all time). Watching this was not wasted time though: Here you have a good tale well told again.
Written by Alan Sharp, directed by Steve Shill, has an above average ITV feel to it. Sony, Antena3, Prosieben films were all involved in production. English 5.1 surround audio. Subtitles Danish, Hindi, Finnish, Norwegina, Swedish. 1.78:1 widescreen