1960. dir. Stanley Kubrick, starring Kirk Douglas, Jean Simmons, Laurence Olivier, Peter Ustinov.
Seen it before? Some of it. We watched it in World History class and Mr. Paris kept fast-forwarding the non-educational parts, i.e. most of it. So I probably saw 1/3 of this before.
Another big, 3-hour Roman epic. This came out a year after Ben-Hur and is comparable in scope and subject matter, so I guess comparisons are inevitable...
Protagonist: Kirk Douglas vs. Charlton Heston. These guys basically delivered the same performance, so it's a tie
Villain: Laurence Olivier vs. Stephen Boyd. Oh, this one is easy. Olivier by a mile.
Tacked-on love interest: Jean Simmons vs. Haya Harareet. I honestly don't remember anything about Harareet's performance. In six weeks, I don't think I'll remember Simmons either. Tie!
Score: Alex North vs. Miklos Rosza. North's work was okay, but Rosza is the clear winner here.
Gay subtext: The "snails and oysters" scene in Spartacus is gayer than anything in Ben-Hur, but not by much.
Big cool action scenes: Ben-Hur had the naval battle and the chariot race, both of which top anything here.
Oscars: Ben-Hur wins 11-4 in that department.
Position on the list: 241
Ben-Hur's position on the list: 142