Charlton Heston: A huge star but also a dramatic actor.

by alexanderdavies-99382 | created - 4 months ago | updated - 3 months ago | Public

According to the man himself, Charlton Heston felt he wasn't quite as good an actor as he could have been. He secretly yearned to be respected by his peers, as being that of a true thespian. Only we, the fans can decide.

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1. Planet of the Apes (1968)

G | 112 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

79 Metascore

An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved.

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner | Stars: Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans

Votes: 157,328 | Gross: $33.40M

The only "Apes" movie that qualifies as a masterpiece.

2. Ben-Hur (1959)

G | 212 min | Adventure, Drama, History

90 Metascore

When a Jewish prince is betrayed and sent into slavery by a Roman friend, he regains his freedom and comes back for revenge.

Director: William Wyler | Stars: Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Stephen Boyd, Haya Harareet

Votes: 203,997 | Gross: $74.70M

Watch this version and enjoy! Ignore the recent one.

3. The Ten Commandments (1956)

G | 220 min | Adventure, Drama

The Egyptian Prince, Moses, learns of his true heritage as a Hebrew and his divine mission as the deliverer of his people.

Director: Cecil B. DeMille | Stars: Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson

Votes: 58,187 | Gross: $93.74M

4. El Cid (1961)

Approved | 182 min | Biography, Drama, History

79 Metascore

The fabled Spanish hero Rodrigo Diaz de Bivar (a.k.a. El Cid) (Charlton Heston) overcomes a family vendetta and court intrigue to defend Christian Spain against the Moors.

Director: Anthony Mann | Stars: Charlton Heston, Sophia Loren, Raf Vallone, Geneviève Page

Votes: 11,876 | Gross: $26.62M

Slightly weak narrative but there are several compensations.

5. The War Lord (1965)

Approved | 123 min | Drama, History

In 11th century Normandy, a Norman duke sends one of his knights to build a defensive fortress in order to guard the borders against Frisian raiders.

Director: Franklin J. Schaffner | Stars: Charlton Heston, Richard Boone, Rosemary Forsyth, Maurice Evans

Votes: 2,717

For a plot of this kind, the scale of the film is too restricted. The performances are good.

6. Arrowhead (1953)

Passed | 105 min | Drama, Romance, Western

Chief of Scouts Ed Bannon works for the US Army at Fort Clark, Texas and he dreams of aiding in bringing peace to the region, despite opposition from both the Army and the Apaches.

Director: Charles Marquis Warren | Stars: Charlton Heston, Jack Palance, Katy Jurado, Brian Keith

Votes: 1,045

Weakly plotted Western but some good action.

7. 55 Days at Peking (1963)

Unrated | 154 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

During the 1900 Boxer Rebellion against foreigners in China, U.S. Marine Major Matt Lewis, aided by British Consul Sir Arthur Robertson, devises a strategy to keep the rebels at bay until an international military relief force arrives.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Guy Green | Stars: Charlton Heston, Ava Gardner, David Niven, Flora Robson

Votes: 5,543

An exciting epic movie!

8. Number One (1969)

PG-13 | 100 min | Drama, Sport

The story of Cat Catlan (Heston), a washed up quarterback who turns to drink and women to solve his problems. But he soon discovers that his problems are just beginning.

Director: Tom Gries | Stars: Charlton Heston, Jessica Walter, Bruce Dern, John Randolph

Votes: 326

A great performance from Chuck Heston but the narrative, ending and other acting are below par.

9. Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970)

G | 95 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

46 Metascore

The sole survivor of an interplanetary rescue mission searches for the only survivor of the previous expedition. He discovers a planet ruled by apes and an underground city run by telepathic humans.

Director: Ted Post | Stars: James Franciscus, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans, Linda Harrison

Votes: 39,359 | Gross: $19.00M

Violent and cerebral but still good.

10. The Hawaiians (1970)

R | 134 min | Drama

The intertwined lives of two kindred souls with ambition begins when Captain Whip Hoxworth discovers that Nyuk Tsin has been smuggled aboard as part of cargo on The Carthaginian, which he ... See full summary »

Director: Tom Gries | Stars: Charlton Heston, Tina Chen, Geraldine Chaplin, Mako

Votes: 898

11. Major Dundee (1965)

Approved | 123 min | Adventure, War, Western

62 Metascore

In 1864, due to frequent Apache raids from Mexico into the U.S., a Union officer decides to illegally cross the border and destroy the Apache, using a mixed army of Union troops, Confederate POWs, civilian mercenaries, and scouts.

Director: Sam Peckinpah | Stars: Charlton Heston, Richard Harris, Jim Hutton, James Coburn

Votes: 6,479 | Gross: $0.01M

The full version still eludes us but a memorable film nonetheless.

12. The Omega Man (1971)

PG | 98 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi

56 Metascore

Lone survivor, doctor Robert Neville, struggles to create a cure for the plague that wiped out most of the human race while fighting The Family, a savage luddite death cult formed by the zombie-like infected to erase the past.

Director: Boris Sagal | Stars: Charlton Heston, Anthony Zerbe, Rosalind Cash, Paul Koslo

Votes: 26,965 | Gross: $8.72M

A classic of the genre. Acting, writing and direction are of a high calibre.

13. Soylent Green (1973)

PG | 97 min | Crime, Mystery, Sci-Fi

66 Metascore

In the world ravaged by the greenhouse effect and overpopulation, an NYPD detective investigates the murder of a big company CEO.

Director: Richard Fleischer | Stars: Charlton Heston, Edward G. Robinson, Leigh Taylor-Young, Chuck Connors

Votes: 53,118

A bit slow in terms of pace and plot development. Edward G. Robinson is outstanding in his final movie.

14. Will Penny (1967)

Approved | 108 min | Romance, Western

Aging cowboy Will Penny gets a line camp job on a large cattle spread and finds his isolated cabin is already occupied by a husbandless woman and her young son.

Director: Tom Gries | Stars: Charlton Heston, Joan Hackett, Donald Pleasence, Lee Majors

Votes: 3,812

An exciting Western and a chance for Chuck Heston to play an actual character.

15. The Three Musketeers (1973)

PG | 106 min | Action, Adventure

A young swordsman comes to Paris and faces villains, romance, adventure and intrigue with three Musketeer friends.

Director: Richard Lester | Stars: Oliver Reed, Raquel Welch, Richard Chamberlain, Michael York

Votes: 14,425 | Gross: $22.02M

16. Touch of Evil (1958)

PG-13 | 95 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

99 Metascore

A stark, perverse story of murder, kidnapping, and police corruption in a Mexican border town.

Director: Orson Welles | Stars: Charlton Heston, Orson Welles, Janet Leigh, Joseph Calleia

Votes: 93,457 | Gross: $2.24M

At last, the version that Orson Welles envisaged.

17. The Four Musketeers: Milady's Revenge (1974)

PG | 108 min | Adventure, History

The Four Musketeers defend the queen and her dressmaker from Cardinal Richelieu and Milady de Winter.

Director: Richard Lester | Stars: Michael York, Raquel Welch, Oliver Reed, Richard Chamberlain

Votes: 9,153 | Gross: $19.10M

18. Midway (1976)

PG | 132 min | Action, Drama, History

48 Metascore

A dramatization of the battle that was widely heralded as a turning point of the Pacific Theatre of World War II.

Director: Jack Smight | Stars: Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda, James Coburn, Glenn Ford

Votes: 16,129

19. Earthquake (1974)

PG | 122 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

56 Metascore

Various interconnected people struggle to survive when an earthquake of unimaginable magnitude hits Los Angeles, California.

Director: Mark Robson | Stars: Charlton Heston, Ava Gardner, George Kennedy, Lorne Greene

Votes: 12,706 | Gross: $79.70M

Ok in small doses but nothing memorable.

20. Airport 1975 (1974)

PG | 107 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

50 Metascore

A 747 in flight collides with a small plane, and is rendered pilotless. Somehow the control tower must get a pilot aboard so the jet can land.

Director: Jack Smight | Stars: Charlton Heston, Karen Black, George Kennedy, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.

Votes: 8,819 | Gross: $47.29M

The best of the "Airport" movies and quite a guilty pleasure.

21. The Awakening (1980)

R | 101 min | Horror

An archeologist discovers his daughter is possessed by the spirit of an Egyptian queen. To save mankind he must destroy her.

Director: Mike Newell | Stars: Charlton Heston, Susannah York, Jill Townsend, Stephanie Zimbalist

Votes: 1,772 | Gross: $8.42M

22. Two-Minute Warning (1976)

R | 115 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A crazed sniper is set to kill spectators at an L.A. Coliseum football championship game and the police races against time to eliminate him.

Director: Larry Peerce | Stars: Charlton Heston, John Cassavetes, Martin Balsam, Beau Bridges

Votes: 3,103

Cliché-ridden and totally predictable.

23. Skyjacked (1972)

PG | 101 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

A crazed Vietnam vet bomber hijacks a Boeing 707 in this disaster film filled with the usual early '70s stereotypes, and demands to be taken to Russia.

Director: John Guillermin | Stars: Charlton Heston, James Brolin, Yvette Mimieux, Claude Akins

Votes: 1,564

Not too bad but the movie loses momentum before the end.

24. The Call of the Wild (1972)

PG | 100 min | Adventure, Family

A house dog is abducted and brought to the north as a sled dog.

Director: Ken Annakin | Stars: Charlton Heston, Michèle Mercier, Raimund Harmstorf, George Eastman

Votes: 1,356

25. The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965)

Approved | 138 min | Biography, Drama, History

The biographical story of Michelangelo's (Charlton Heston's) troubles while painting the Sistine Chapel at the urging of Pope Julius II (Sir Rex Harrison).

Director: Carol Reed | Stars: Charlton Heston, Rex Harrison, Diane Cilento, Harry Andrews

Votes: 6,027

Terrific cast in an interesting film but the ending was abrupt.

26. The Greatest Show on Earth (1952)

Passed | 152 min | Drama, Family, Romance

The dramatic lives of trapeze artists, a clown, and an elephant trainer are told against a background of circus spectacle.

Director: Cecil B. DeMille | Stars: James Stewart, Charlton Heston, Betty Hutton, Cornel Wilde

Votes: 11,786 | Gross: $36.00M

27. True Lies (1994)

R | 141 min | Action, Comedy, Thriller

63 Metascore

A fearless, globe-trotting, terrorist-battling secret agent has his life turned upside down when he discovers his wife might be having an affair with a used car salesman while terrorists smuggle nuclear war heads into the United States.

Director: James Cameron | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold, Bill Paxton

Votes: 222,398 | Gross: $146.28M

28. Tombstone (1993)

R | 130 min | Action, Biography, Drama

50 Metascore

A successful lawman's plans to retire anonymously in Tombstone, Arizona, are disrupted by the kind of outlaws he was famous for eliminating.

Directors: George P. Cosmatos, Kevin Jarre | Stars: Kurt Russell, Val Kilmer, Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton

Votes: 116,887 | Gross: $56.51M

Only a brief appearance but a good one.

29. The Wreck of the Mary Deare (1959)

Not Rated | 105 min | Adventure, Crime, Drama

A disgraced merchant marine officer elects to stay aboard his sinking cargo ship in order to prove the vessel was deliberately scuttled and, as a result, vindicate his good name.

Director: Michael Anderson | Stars: Gary Cooper, Charlton Heston, Michael Redgrave, Emlyn Williams

Votes: 2,098

30. The Order (2001)

R | 89 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

A playboy criminal contacts his dad after stealing a Faberge egg. Later it seems his dad has gone missing in Israel so he heads there. His disappearance is linked to the religious sect: The Order. Lots of fight and chase scenes.

Director: Sheldon Lettich | Stars: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Sofia Milos, Charlton Heston, Brian Thompson

Votes: 7,470

Totally pointless cameo.

31. The Naked Jungle (1954)

Approved | 95 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller

The Leiningen South American cocoa plantation is threatened by a 2-mile-wide, 20-mile-long column of army ants.

Director: Byron Haskin | Stars: Charlton Heston, Eleanor Parker, Abraham Sofaer, William Conrad

Votes: 3,318

Better than I expected, possibly the best movie from Chuck Heston's early years.

32. Khartoum (1966)

Approved | 128 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

In the Sudan, in 1884 to 1885, Egyptian forces led by a British General defend Khartoum against an invading Muslim Army led by a religious fanatic, the Mahdi.

Directors: Basil Dearden, Eliot Elisofon | Stars: Charlton Heston, Laurence Olivier, Richard Johnson, Ralph Richardson

Votes: 6,140

Tediously plotted, poor climax but acting and dialogue are very good. Earlier battle scenes exciting.

33. Gray Lady Down (1978)

PG | 111 min | Adventure, Drama, History

A Navy Captain uses his experimental Snark to reach a nuclear submarine stuck on an ocean ledge.

Director: David Greene | Stars: Charlton Heston, David Carradine, Stacy Keach, Ned Beatty

Votes: 2,562

Ok in places but too long a film.

34. Antony and Cleopatra (1972)

Not Rated | 160 min | Drama, History

After the murder of her lover Caesar, Egypt's queen Cleopatra needs a new ally. She seduces his probable successor Mark Antony. This develops into real love and slowly leads to a war with the other possible successor: Octavius.

Director: Charlton Heston | Stars: Charlton Heston, Hildegard Neil, Eric Porter, John Castle

Votes: 697

35. Counterpoint (1968)

TV-PG | 107 min | Drama, Music, War

A famous orchestra conductor is captured by the Germans in WW2, and is forced to perform at private concerts for the Nazi generals.

Director: Ralph Nelson | Stars: Charlton Heston, Maximilian Schell, Kathryn Hays, Leslie Nielsen

Votes: 605

36. The Big Country (1958)

Passed | 166 min | Romance, Western

A New Englander arrives in the Old West, where he becomes embroiled in a feud between two families over a valuable patch of land.

Director: William Wyler | Stars: Gregory Peck, Jean Simmons, Carroll Baker, Charlton Heston

Votes: 14,184

37. Dark City (1950)

Not Rated | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Gamblers who "took" an out-of-town sucker in a crooked poker game feel shadowy vengeance closing in on them.

Director: William Dieterle | Stars: Charlton Heston, Lizabeth Scott, Viveca Lindfors, Dean Jagger

Votes: 1,645

38. Robert Montgomery Presents (1950–1957)

60 min | Drama

Actor, Producer, and Director Robert Montgomery introduced each telecast, sometimes interviewing one of the stars, and sometimes appearing in the play.

Stars: Robert Montgomery, John Newland, Vaughn Taylor, Elizabeth Montgomery

Votes: 75

39. Playhouse 90 (1956–1961)

90 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

Of the many anthology series, Playhouse 90 is considered the most ambitious with outstanding talent in front of the camera. Attracting top ranked directors and scripts it was often filmed live including the entire first season.

Stars: Richard Joy, Charles Bickford, Kim Hunter, Malcolm Atterbury

Votes: 243

40. The Jackie Gleason Show (1952–1973)

TV-G | 60 min | Comedy

Live variety show with Jackie Gleason.

Stars: Jack Lescoulie, The June Taylor Dancers, Jackie Gleason, Ray Bloch

Votes: 311

41. Studio One in Hollywood (1948–1958)

60 min | Drama

A pinnacle of the Golden Age of Television, "Studio One" presented a wide range of memorable dramas and received eighteen Emmy nominations and five wins during its prestigious nine-year run... See full summary »

Stars: Betty Furness, Paul Brinson, Paul Branson, Mary Sinclair

Votes: 185

42. Crossed Swords (1977)

PG | 113 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

Poor boy Tom Canty (Mark Lester) and Edward, Prince of Wales (Mark Lester) exchange identities, but events force the pair to experience each other's lives as well.

Director: Richard Fleischer | Stars: Oliver Reed, Raquel Welch, Mark Lester, Ernest Borgnine

Votes: 1,466

43. Schlitz Playhouse (1951–1959)

30 min | Comedy, Drama

Originally billed as "Playhouse of the Stars" this long running anthology series was originally presented live from New York City. Irene Dunne was briefly the hostess in 1952, and the show frequently used Broadway performers in classic stories.

Stars: James Mason, Irene Dunne, Robert Paige, Walter Coy

Votes: 181

44. Climax! (1954–1958)

60 min | Drama

This was an anthology series that presented a different story and different set of characters on each episode. It ran from 1954 to 1958 and featured Casino Royale of James Bond fame that lead to a feature film of the same name.

Stars: William Lundigan, Art Gilmore, Mary Costa, Harry Townes

Votes: 155

45. The Buccaneer (1958)

Approved | 119 min | Adventure, Drama, History

During the war of 1812, Louisiana buccaneer Jean Lafitte assists the Americans in defending New Orleans against the attacking British war fleet.

Director: Anthony Quinn | Stars: Yul Brynner, Claire Bloom, Charles Boyer, Inger Stevens

Votes: 2,093

46. The Last Hard Men (1976)

R | 98 min | Western

In 1909 Arizona, retired lawman Sam Burgade's life is thrown upside-down when his old enemy Zach Provo and six other convicts escape a chain-gang in the Yuma Territorial Prison and come gunning for Burgade.

Director: Andrew V. McLaglen | Stars: Charlton Heston, James Coburn, Barbara Hershey, Jorge Rivero

Votes: 1,724

47. Suspense (1949–1954)

25 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Live plays featuring people who were in dangerous and threatening situations.

Stars: Rex Marshall, Robert Emhardt, John Baragrey, Mildred Natwick

Votes: 146

48. Kraft Suspense Theatre (1963–1965)

TV-PG | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Kraft Suspense Theater was an anthology series which featured a new cast and stories each week.

Stars: David Lewis, Francis De Sales, Harry Townes, Jack Kelly

Votes: 172

49. Julius Caesar (1970)

G | 117 min | Drama, History, War

6.1