The film was originally set for release on February 26, 2016, but in October 2015 it was pushed back to August 12, 2016. See more »
As Judas walks through the market, the traders are emptying baskets of chili peppers that fill the entire foreground of the shot. But they were introduced to the world when Diego Álvarez Chanca, a physician on Columbus' second voyage to the West Indies in 1493, brought the first chili peppers to Spain and first wrote about their medicinal effects in 1494. See more »
Hate, anger, fear. Those are all lies they use to turn you against each other. When you set aside the hate they force you to carry, that's when you know love is our true nature.
See more »
The end credits for the director, producer and department heads are animated to look like they fly across the race track, kicking up dust as if they were horse-drawn chariots. See more »
Bland and misjudged. Furthers the bad reputation of remakes.
Remakes, reboots, re-imaginings, revamps whatever you may call them, they're predominantly regarded as unoriginal and/or unnecessary cash-ins. They're not all a waste of time (think The Departed or Let Me In), but it's vapid movies like this that ensure their bad name stays in tact. Lets start with the positives though. With Russian director Timur Bekmambetov (Day Watch, Wanted) behind the camera stylish action sequences are all but guaranteed, and an incredible battle at sea witnessed from below the decks undeniably delivers on this front. He's also lucky his two leading men, Jack Huston as the eponymous persecuted Jew and Toby Kebbell as his vengeful Roman (adopted) brother, are both extremely strong actors who manage to turn even the worst dialogue into semi-watchable melodrama. That's where the praise stops unfortunately, for the rest of the film shouts disaster. The most notable flaw is the casting of Morgan "paycheque" Freeman, who plummets to new depths of awfulness thanks to his phoned-in performance, a lazy and clichéd narration, and a wig that'll enter the hairpiece hall of shame alongside Travolta's hairdo from Battlefield Earth. There are also a plethora of bizarre choices made by the filmmakers, including an embarrassingly out-of-place epilogue featuring Jesus (Rodrigo Santoro) that should've been either fleshed out more throughout the runtime or cut away entirely. As is increasingly common in modern blockbusters there's also a heavy use of CGI which in and of itself isn't necessarily a bad thing except here it is woefully underdone and sticks out like a sore thumb, especially in the numerous wide shots attempting to establish scale and grandeur. Perhaps most disappointing is the underwhelming chariot-race finale that, for all its hand-held camera-work and gritty intentions, is stunted by messy editing, weirdly absent violence and poor choreography that fails to hide the dumb conveniences within the race. Capped off with an atrocious song played over the final moments, Ben-Hur 2.0 is a bland and misjudged rehash of a swords-and-sandals classic.
22 of 32 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?