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
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.