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“Ben Hur” (1925) Silent Film

Details:
Apr. 30, 3:00 pm
Hear Jay Warren of the Silent Film Society of Chicago accompany the 1925 silent film classic "Ben Hur" on the 1926 Wurlitzer Theater Pipe Organ in the Church Hall of St. John Cantius.




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Tickets
$10 (general admission)
$5 (kids 12 and under)

You can get tickets at the door as well.


Overview



Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ is a 1925 American epic silent film directed by Fred Niblo and written by June Mathis based on the 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by General Lew Wallace. Starring Ramon Novarro as the title character, the film is the first feature-length adaptation of the novel and second overall, following the 1907 short.

In 1997, Ben-Hur was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."

Directors: Fred Niblo, Charles Brabin
Writers: Lew Wallace (by) (as General Lew Wallace), June Mathis (adaptation)
Stars: Ramon Novarro, Francis X. Bushman, May McAvoy

Movie Plot



Ben-Hur is a wealthy Jew and boyhood friend of the powerful Roman Tribune, Messala. When an accident leads to Ben-Hur's arrest, Messala, who has become corrupt and arrogant, makes sure Ben-Hur and his family are jailed and separated.

Ben-Hur is sentenced to slave labor in a Roman war galley. Along the way, he unknowingly encounters Jesus, the carpenter's son who offers him water. Once aboard ship, his attitude of defiance and strength impresses a Roman admiral, Quintus Arrius, who allows him to remain unchained. This actually works in the Admiral's favor because when his ship is attacked and sunk by pirates, Ben-Hur saves him from drowning.

Arrius then treats Ben-Hur as a son, and over the years the young man grows strong and becomes a victorious chariot racer. This eventually leads to a climactic showdown with Messala in a chariot race, in which Ben-Hur is the victor. However, Messala does not die, as he does in the more famous 1959 remake of the film.

Ben-Hur is eventually reunited with his mother and sister, who are suffering from leprosy but are miraculously cured by Jesus