King of Kings

KingOfKingsposterBBB

(out of 5)


Biblical epics were not hard to come by in the post-Robe era, perfect for the Cinemascope generation to be dazzled while fulfilling their good Christian duties at the movies, a number of them focusing on the life of Jesus Christ.   Being directed by Nicholas Ray would, you would hope, give it a different level of intelligence and intensity than the usual bloated nonsense that these kinds of films featured (Ben-Hur, for example) but what Ray comes up with is surprisingly not that captivating.  Orson Welles‘ narration opens with political and cultural details of events leading up to Jesus’s birth for what is presumably going to be a more studied and intelligent story of his life than earlier films have ever shown.  The Messiah’s adult years, played by the brightly blue-eyed , tell the stories known from the Bible, all of it splayed across the wide screen in flashy colours and sharp, perfectly blocked images.  There’s no power to any of it, though, and the narration continuing throughout the whole film means that it all feels like an opening sequence, making you spend three hours waiting for it to begin and get to the good stuff.  What should be an emotional experience feels more like Jesus For Dummies.


Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

USA, 1961

Directed by

Screenplay by 

Cinematography by ,

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by , , ,

Costume Design by , ,

Film Editing by ,

Golden Globe Awards 1961

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s