Review: Ben-Hur



Genre: Adventure, Drama
Duration: 124 minutes
Language: English
India Release Date: 19-AUG-2016
Pick-D-Flick Rating: 3.75 on 5 (Worth a Visit)

The epic story of Judah Ben-Hur (Jack Huston), a prince falsely accused of treason by his adopted brother, an officer in the Roman army. After years at sea, Judah returns to his homeland to seek revenge, but finds redemption.

Overall Review:
2016 Ben-Hur is a remake of 1959’s classic version with the same name that won 11 Oscar awards. This American epic historical action drama is directed by Timur Bekmambetov. Cinematically, the film was a little disappointing. Director completely failed to maintain the pace which is very important for a historic drama movie. It was like 3 hour classic film condensed to 2 hours. Ben-Hur definitely could’ve benefited from additional development and exposition. Everything just happens too quickly and with minimal challenge. The first hour of Ben-Hur includes some exposition, a little action and drama but feels a bit lethargic with unnatural dialogues that slows the momentum down. However, once Morgan Freeman shows up midway, film picks up a sudden burst of momentum and becomes a rousing, thrilling, exhilarating epic. In other words, Freeman not only arrives as Ilderim to rescue Ben-Hur, but also to rescue the film. The grandeur of the Roman Empire fails to show as prominently as it should have in this film. Chariot Race and Ben-Hur are synonyms. The chariot sequence is filmed separately and at lavish expense. They are beautifully-shot and edited because they fully capture the visceral intensity of the moment while allowing you to actually follow what’s going on. The costumes and environments were exquisite, Visuals are dazzling from a perspective of beauty and history. The new Ben-Hur gets bigger (but not better) as it races to the finish line.

Performance & Technical Review:
Performances are the key element of new Ben-Hur. Jack Huston has done a wonderful job and Morgan Freeman also has done a fair job for the role of Ilderim. Background score is good. The action sequence is very well made and the CGI using is good. The director missed a very good opportunity and if he would have concentrated about the content and the subplots, this would have been an epic.

PDF Verdict:
Prepare to be on the edge of your seat and experience larger-than-life nail-biting story on the silver screen. If only the film’s dramatic scenes were as effective its action sequences, Ben-Hur would’ve been Majestic, Masterful and Glorious.

Ratings: 3.75 on 5 (Worth A Visit)
Performance: 3.5 on 5
Script: 3 on 5
Music / Background Score: 3.5 on 5
CGI: 4 on 5

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