‘Ten Commandments' gets epic box set treatment
BY GENE TRIPLETT
Fraser Heston broke into movies with a little of help from his dad.
So when Fraser was born to Charlton and Lydia Heston on Feb. 12, 1955, he was a natural for the role of Baby Moses.
“And there’s a famous story my mom used to tell, that the first telegram she got after I was born was from C.B. DeMille, and it said, ‘Congratulations, he’s got the part’,” Fraser Heston said in a recent phone interview from Los Angeles.
The younger Heston, now 56 and a director and screenwriter, was doing press interviews to promote the release of a fully restored, high definition version of “The Ten Commandments,” celebrating the 55th anniversary of producer-director DeMille’s last and most ambitious film.
Devoted fans of the film who can afford the extravagant six-disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo gift set will find packaging and extras as epic as the film itself, with a box bearing an image of the Red Sea that parts when the box is opened to reveal to two tablets, which contain all six discs in the set. There’s also a commemorative photo and archive book, a new 75-minute documentary on the film and its impact, original costume sketches, the 1923 silent version — also directed by DeMille, available for the first time in Blu-ray — international premiere photos, production notes from DeMille, correspondence from Charlton Heston, and feature commentary. (Less expensive two-disc Blu-ray and DVD sets also are available.)
But the colors, images and sound are as startlingly vibrant and vivid as any high definition restoration has achieved so far, making special effects scenes such as the parting of the Red Sea as stunning as they must have been when first viewed by audiences in 1956. Every blowing strand of Moses’ silvery main and beard seems clearly defined and real.
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