Let My People Go
The Prince of Egypt
Review by Ross Anthony

The Exodus story painted and sung into fiery crimson frames and enchanting hymns; "The Prince of Egypt" delivers with Charleston Heston "Ten Commandments" strength, the stern story of the Passover. Val Kilmer's voice breathes Moses to life, Michelle Pfeiffer speaks for the sassy Tzipporah with Ralph Fiennes bringing the same "faulted-stone" presence of his "Quiz Show" to the Rameses Character.

I like a movie that grabs me from the get go. Take a vulnerable crying newborn, put him in a woven basket and send him drifting down a river full of crocodiles. I'm watching. The melodies to the haunting song "Deliver" flow with the same grace and enchantment of the oil painted currents under the baby Moses. This gorgeous somber scene spills into a rushing chariot race as exciting as the best car chase scenes around.

The movie focuses on the relationship between two brothers Moses and Rameses -- the love they cannot deny for each other and the chasm of faith, purpose and mission large enough to part the Red Sea. A fantastic psychedelic motif of Hieroglyphics are used to "enlighten" Moses of his heritage as a Hebrew and the horrifying nightmarish truth of the pharaoh (the man he used to call father). My breath slowed, eyes watered, and a chill similar to that of the breath of Passover plague crawled up my neck as Moses realizes his father drowned countless Hebrew babes. In fact, you might consider leaving your younger ones with a babysitter due to this serious subject matter.

No one is denying that the parting of the red sea scene from "The Ten Commandments" is a powerful special effect (especially for it's time). Don't worry, "Prince of Egypt" tidal waves command that same awe. I believe the people at DreamWorks put their brushes to the film with the spirit Moses put his staff in the mighty Nile, lighting it up with the eerie color of bloodshed. This is a powerful engaging film.

The Prince of Egypt. Animated Feature. Rated PG.
Voices of Val Kilmer, Michelle Pfeiffer and other big names.
Directed by Brenda Chapman.


Copyright © 1999 Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit: RossAnthony.com

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:00:43 PDT