Thursday, December 20, 2012
Heston's Best: WILL PENNY
Charlton Heston won his Best Actor Academy Award for playing a Jewish prince-turned-slave called Ben-Hur. That was the name of William Wyler's spectacular spectacle -- an epic that takes place during the life of Christ. The movie opens with the Savior's birth and Three Wise Men finding the newborn in a stable. Later, adult Jesus has a couple of key scenes with Ben-Hur. Heston gets the close-ups though. Jesus gives him a hand.
If you've seen Charlton Heston as Ben-Hur but you've never seen him as Will Penny, I urge you to rent the DVD and leave me some comments after watching it. I want to know if you, like I, feel that it's his best screen performance -- even better than the one that brought him an Academy Award. He starred as Ben-Hur, El Cid, Moses in The Ten Commandments, Michelangelo in The Agony and the Ecstasy, John the Baptist in The Greatest Story Ever Told and Astronaut George Taylor in Planet of the Apes. Yet rarely was the actor as extraordinary as when he played an ordinary cowboy named Will Penny.