The Prince of Egypt

This thread was prompted by the current Disney songs thread, because while I’m not one of those people who retained a love (or even a tolerance) for Disney movies past a certain age, I absolutely love, to this day, Dreamworks’ The Prince of Egypt. It just strikes me as a real cut above, like a movie that really had a lot of care and passion poured into it. I’m guessing it’s really in a different league than most Disney movies, because it has a sense of urgency, high dramatic tension, and dark undertones that they don’t have (except maybe the Hunchback of Notre Dame-- all I remember about that one is that it seemed really menacing for Disney). The music is fantastic. It employs a ton of repeating motifs, which I love, personally, and in my opinion “The Plagues” is almost comparable to West Side Story’s “Tonight Quintet” in sheer exhilarating climacticness. All the extraneous Whitney Houston and Boyz II Men stuff at the end of the soundtrack is kind of silly and dated, but those songs don’t really count. Sure, the movie can be a little hammy, but the scope of the movie is so grand and there are enough moments of levity that it’s forgivable.

Any other fans?

Oh, also, some of the animation is incredible. The parting of the Red Sea is amazing (love the outlines of the whales and such), and the treatment of the Death of the First Born is breathtaking.

Absolutely! I haven’t seen it in quite a long time, but I have the soundtrack. I love the song Brian Stokes Mitchell’s character sings: “And though you never know all the steps, you must learn to join the dance…”

Some great vocal talent, too. Ralph Fiennes was in it, wasn’t he? And Michelle Pfeiffer?

Man, it’s funny that you all like the songs. That’s the one thing I really disliked about the movie - it didn’t feel like a real musical. The songs felt shoehorned in. You know how in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, with the kid who Just Wants to Sing? Like that. I enjoyed the movie on several levels but cringed every time somebody opened their mouth to SIIIIIINNNNGGGG! It seemed as out of place as a wisecracking animal sidekick would have. A few of the songs did fit the flow of the movie, but the majority of them, to me, were very out of place.

I liked the music rather a lot, have a bunch of it on CD. One thing I -loved- about it, though, was the psychology of the story. It was the first time I ever really felt sympathetic for the pharoah. He was raised to never be the weak link in a chain of empires, and it was that hubris that destroyed him and his people. The way they showed that… Just impressed the heck outa me.

One of my all time favorite animated movies. I tear up every time a the scene of the slaves finally being freed. The song that plays during the scene is easily my favorite from the entire movie.

On a semi-related note, I thought Dreamworks Sinbad was pretty good, too, even though it bugged me that they de-Arabized the story. The animation on the shape-shifting evil goddess was really good, and the writing had some decent wit in it.

Conversely, pretty much all of their CGI movies left me cold, including Shrek.

I love it. I’m trying to get my girls into it but they haven’t bitten.

Another standout scene is when Moses is surrounded by all the Egyptian murals and they come to life egyptian mural-style depicting how he came into the presence of Pharaoh’s daughter. I like the burning bush scene, too, the way everything is scoured and whispery. Lots of other nice details.

Through Heaven’s Eyes is a great song. River Lullaby is nice, too. The others are ok. Funny, I never really thought of it as a musical. Deliver Us - with the departed Ofra Haza singing at the end was a great way to start it off.

Love that movie. I don’t own any animated Disney DVD’s, but I have Prince of Egypt.

As for songs - sometimes when I am watching it, I’ll play the opening number “Deliver Us” several times before moving on to the rest of the movie. It’s epic. I also love Jethro’s song. I can’t think of any of the musical numbers that I felt didn’t belong.

And the cast included Fiennes, Val Kilmer, Patrick Stewart, Michelle Pfeiffer, Sandra Bullock, Jeff Goldblum and Danny Glover (with Steve Martin and Martin Short).

This a great, and often sadly overlooked, film.

I wasn’t sure I was going to like this movie. I mean, a musical of a Bible story? Such an important Bible story? I was sure they were going to soften the edges, Disneyize it, like with Hunchback or Mermaid.

But I love this film. God was, well God, a personal and potent real being, not some impersonal energy or Force. And not many animated films kill kids, but this one did. As a child I was always curious about this story, as I am a firstborn myself.

My favorite song was Jethro’s “Look at Your Life Through Heaven’s Eyes”

There were minor changes from the Biblical tale, such at having Moses found by Pharoh’s wife, not his sister. Although in ancient Egypt they may have been one and the same. And it was his brother Aaron the accompanied Moses on his appearance before the Pharoh, not his wife Sephora. But I had no problem with these details, they didn’t really matter.

I love this movie. I’m a hardcore Disney fan as well, but “Prince of Egypt” is probably one of the few non-Disney animated films I like. Everything about it was great. Sure, a little cheesy at times, but for the most part, I thought they rendered the story incredibly with just the right amount of respect. I was definitely impressed how close they stayed to the Biblical accounts, although as noted before, they did make a few changes (unnecessary ones, I thought, but minor enough for it not to be a big deal). I guess the “bridegroom of blood” part was a little too violent/weird to include. :slight_smile:

My favorite part is definitely the burning bush. What an incredible scene- makes me cry everytime! The portrayal of God is so perfect- it reminds me a lot of the “still, small voice” of Elijah and is so absolutely breathtaking.

I think I’m going to go watch it now!

Oh yeah, I’m a big fan too. We own this one. Half the songs make me cry. The song where they’re leaving Egypt (“When you believe”) is my favorite, especially the part where children sing in Hebrew.

The plagues are amazingly well-done, so is the burning bush, so much of it is just so good! Maybe I’ll watch it again tonight too…

The biggest change, I think, is definitely Moses’ age-- I’m pretty sure in the Torah he’s no spring chicken when he leads the Israelites to the land o’ milk and honey.

It’s one of my favorites. I haven’t seen it in years and “Deliver Us” still came into my head when I saw this.