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Wednesday, May 24, 2006

DeMille's epic 'The Sign of the Cross'


" ... Claudette Colbert is happily naked in her first scene, bathing in "wild asses’ milk." One immediately ponders the distinction, if any, between wild ass milk, and a similar beverage harvested from a tame ass, though chances are you’ll be angling for a glimpse of Claudette’s, be it tame or wild. I promise you’ll not be fiddling with the remote or the Frito bag during this sequence. ..."

"... Depression jitters and friction with Paramount bosses dictated a lower budget --- half of it coming out of DeMille’s purse --- amazing how far (less than) $700,000 went in those days. Some would say it’s a bit sluggish at times. True enough --- but when this show lights up, it’s pure incandescence. There’s three wallops --- the milk bath, Fredric March’s at-home sex orgy, and a coliseum bloodbath that’s the all-time grand slam of pre-code excesses --- it took a lot of sick minds working overtime to dream up this stuff, and all of us should be profoundly grateful for their efforts. ..."

John McElwee of Greenbriar Picture Shows writes about Cecil B. DeMille's 'The Sign of the Cross', recently released on DVD.
Read more here: Pre-Code DeMille On DVD.