The night before word of Heston’s death came out, I was watching “Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace,” and marveling at how bad it was. I noticed how that totally idiotic pod race, with 5-year old Anakin Skywalker being drug around a track by two jets on tethers, was modeled after the chariot race in “Ben Hur,” which was a thousand times better. It made me reflect on how good of a movie “Ben Hur” actually was. Charlton Heston was brilliant in that film. He was a great Moses too, the later attempts to dramatize the Exodus making “The Ten Commandments” loom even greater. I think Heston came to be under-rated by later film critics, his stock probably going down once he started his pro-gun rights activism with the NRA. Yes, he did some silly films, such as “Planet of the Apes.” But his remained, literally, an epic achievement in Hollywood.
Charlton Heston dies
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About Gene Veith
Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.