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Classic Religious Themed Directors: 5 Filmmakers Who Stand

By    |   Tuesday, 28 Apr 2015 10:57 PM

Religious themes appear to some degree in every movie. Whether the plot involves biblical figures, persons of the cloth, or references to sins and sinners, good movies include characters facing their demons and making choices that demonstrate their morals. There are several top-notch classic directors who have illustrated religious themes to make great stories.

1. Cecil B. DeMille


DeMille is the pioneering director of epic films, producing several notable Biblical-themed classics. He is the son of a lay minister in the Episcopal Church, and his biblical tales, "Samson and Delilah," "The Ten Commandments," and "The King of Kings" launched the careers of some of Hollywood's biggest stars. DeMille is one of the few directors to have success in both the silent movies and in the sound era. He is considered the master of spectacle, and he pioneered several advances in movie-making technology. He is represented on Hollywood's Walk of Fame, and he was honored by the Golden Globe Awards by naming their lifetime achievement award after him.

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2. William Wyler


Wyler directed "Ben-Hur" in 1959, and audiences still love this story of a Jewish nobleman in the Roman Empire, known for what is arguably Charlton Heston's most famous role. This director became known as "90-take Wyler" for his perfectionist nature that demanded long days on the set. Wyler has been nominated for 12 Academy Awards, winning three. In 1976, Wyler received the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award.

3. Martin Scorsese


Scorsese directed "The Last Temptation of Christ" in 1988, a controversial film that shows Jesus as a human and as a divine being. He illustrates that sin is everywhere and temptation avoids nobody. His "Kundun" is the true story of Tibet's 14th Dalai Lama. The film shows the religious leader's struggle to earn freedom in Tibet in a world of powerful politics.

4. Ron Howard

As a director, it appears that Howard does everything to perfection, including his oversight of "The Da Vinci Code" in 2006. A murder in a Paris museum leads to investigation of the Da Vinci paintings to find clues, and to the discovery of a secret society that could shake the foundation of Christianity. A thriller based in Christianity, Howard handles this touchy subject adeptly. Audiences were enraptured by the film, which made more than $750 million worldwide.

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5. Mel Gibson

Gibson directed "The Passion of the Christ" in 2004, displaying a violent and provocative scene in the Garden of Getheseme. This event occurred on the last day of Christ's life and leads to his death on the cross. The film was considered controversial, and several religious scholars have commented on its authenticity. However, it was well-received by audiences, making more than $600 million worldwide.

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Religious themes appear to some degree in every movie. Whether the plot involves biblical figures, persons of the cloth, or references to sins and sinners, there are several top-notch classic directors who have illustrated religious themes to make great stories.
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2015-57-28
Tuesday, 28 Apr 2015 10:57 PM
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