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Howard Hawks took time in between Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Rio Bravo to direct Land of the Pharoahs (1955), with a cast of thousands, led by the heaving bosoms of Joan Collins. No expense was spared, with nearly 10,000 extras "and 1600 camels in the production!" as the marketing materials of the time proclaim. William Faulkner co-wrote the screenplay, which features delicious turns of events like a lying, scheming so-and-so getting comeuppance by, yes, being sealed alive in a pyramid: "A structure to house one man--and the greatest treasure of all time."
And The Prodigal (1955), directed by Richard Thorpe, tells the ancient biblical tale of two toiling brothers, but ups the ante for the wandering son with a decidedly ungodly pagan temptress in the form of Lana Turner (it's a wonder he ever made it back to his father's farm!). Originally an MGM release, The Prodigal hearkens to the mid-'50s era of the great biblical epic (which many fans believe is due for a renaissance), though it takes extreme liberties with Jesus's parable. Then again, if Lana Turner's figure doesn't signify "debauchery" and "riotous living," what does?
The boxed set also includes some very instructional extras, like vintage interviews with Hawks and contemporary interviews with Peter Bogdanovich and film historians. Let the catapulting begin! --A.T. Hurley
I particularly enjoyed Land of the Pharaohs and the Colossus of Rhodes.
The weakest (and most laughable) part of the film is Rory Calhoun's leading character, but the rest of the cast is fine - though the plot is overly-complex.
All the films included here look extremely good with some looking much better than others depending on the source print and its condition.
I am 70 and saw Land of the Pharoh's when I was 12 or 13. This movie and so excellently acted. The scenes are so breath taking for the time period when they did not have computers... Read morePublished 6 months ago by carmen anderson
All are great. Land of Pharoas, Colleseus of Rhodes are extremely novel and engaging. One comes to know many things that could have happened in the remote past.Published on February 18, 2013 by Anil Mahajan
Land of the Pharaohs was by far the best film in this collection. The Prodigal had some nice moments. The less said about "Colossus", the better.Published on February 13, 2013 by samuraireview
I have watched my movies in this set. All were clear in sound and picture. I particularly enjoyed Land of the Pharaohs and the Colossus of Rhodes. Read morePublished on September 27, 2012 by Jacquelene Murphy