Movie Monday: December 24, 1923

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Ten Commandments Image
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Ninety-five years ago, today, The Ten Commandments, a Cecil B. DeMille silent film, was showing. Much like the Charlie Chaplin movie from last week, if this movie was a number one, there is no way to tell as the Academy Awards were still six years away. It was the 2nd highest-grossing film of 1923 so, it was very popular. It starred Theodore Roberts, Charles de Rochefort, Estelle Taylor, Julia Faye, Terrence Moore, James Neill, Lawson Butt and Clarence Burton. It was released on December 4 at Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.

Plot from IMDB:

The first part tells the story of Moses leading the Jews from Egypt to the Promised Land, his receipt of the tablets and the worship of the golden calf. The second part shows the efficacy of the commandments in modern life through a story set in San Francisco. Two brothers, rivals for the love of Mary, also come into conflict when John discovers Dan used shoddy materials to construct a cathedral.

Trivia Bits:
♦ Most of the chariot crashes in the prologue were real and unplanned.
♦ After production, the enormous movie sets were bulldozed and buried in sand. It is now the legendary “Lost City of DeMille” and the site is recognized as an official archaeological site by the state of California.
♦ Midway through production, the film ran out of money and Cecil B. DeMille’s original backers pulled out. The production was saved when DeMille called in a personal favor from his friend Amadeo Giannini, one of the founders of Bank of America. Giannini’s $500,000 investment allowed the production to continue without stopping.

One Nomination

16 thoughts on “Movie Monday: December 24, 1923

    bottomlesscoffee007 said:
    December 24, 2018 at 11:29 pm

    That’s incredible.

    badfinger20 said:
    December 24, 2018 at 11:57 pm

    Thanks for bringing this movie up. It’s on my silent list to watch…“Lost City of DeMille” is very interesting in itself.

    jmshistorycorner said:
    January 1, 2019 at 10:00 am

    Haven’t seen it. I’m more familiar with (and love) DeMille’s more famous 1956 remake.

      The Hinoeuma responded:
      January 1, 2019 at 1:00 pm

      Most people are. Charlton Heston was an amazing actor. So was Yul Brenner.

        jmshistorycorner said:
        January 1, 2019 at 9:17 pm

        Yes, they are. Brilliant actors. They bring the roles to life so well. One tends to notice most how well the villain actors act – and Brynner excels.

          The Hinoeuma responded:
          January 1, 2019 at 10:04 pm

          Doesn’t he, tho. He has the stare. He was creepy on Westworld.

            jmshistorycorner said:
            January 1, 2019 at 10:05 pm

            Never seen Westworld.

              The Hinoeuma responded:
              January 1, 2019 at 10:14 pm

              I understand there is a new version of it on Showtime? HBO? Something like that.

              Google/Bing Yul Brynner (I just realized I mis-spelled his name) and Westworld. CREEP-Y. Michael Crichton piece. I was seven when it came out.

                jmshistorycorner said:
                January 1, 2019 at 10:17 pm

                The same Michael Crichton who penned Jurassic Park?

                  The Hinoeuma responded:
                  January 1, 2019 at 10:20 pm

                  Yeppers. Same one. And, my personal faves ‘The Andromeda Strain’ (the original), ‘Coma’, ‘Looker’, ‘Runaway’ and ‘Sphere’.

                    jmshistorycorner said:
                    January 1, 2019 at 10:23 pm

                    Never heard of those.

                      The Hinoeuma responded:
                      January 1, 2019 at 10:32 pm

                      ‘The Andromeda Strain’ is from 1971. ‘Coma’ is 1978 (Tom Selleck does a turn as a body). ‘Looker’ was 1981 and didn’t do all that well at the box office but, you get to see Susan Dey naked. ‘Runaway’ is 1984 and, this time, Tom Selleck has the lead (Kirstie Alley & Gene Simmons of KISS are in this one). Gene Simmons makes a very nasty villain and he can do the same, creepy Brynner stare, too. ‘Sphere’ was 1998 (Dustin Hoffman, Samuel L. Jackson and Sharon Stone). I loved all of these.

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