The Ten Commandments
(PG) Magna Home Entertainment DVD/BD
The impressive amount of research and commentary from cultural, archaeological and historical experts in this three-DVD documentary series provides comprehensive insight into the history of the exodus and the Commandments.
The first documentary in particular is thorough in examining the practical, societal and spiritual nature of the Commandments in the context of the post-slavery Israelite culture. It expands its focus to examine the changing role of the Commandments in different societies throughout time and how these evolving interpretations have influenced our understanding today.
Of particular interest are the explanations of plagues in relation to Egyptian culture and religion, which presents the events of the exodus using the Bible and other religious sources. The documentary tells of the various archaeological attempts to find evidence of it and the actual location ofMount Sinai.
The contextualisation of the Israelite exodus in relation to other major events in history around the world at the time is a nice touch.
However the third documentary, focusing on Moses himself and his life, is by far the Achilles’ heel of this series. While it presents ample background on Moses’ life, it often wanders into speculation to fill in the gaps that the Bible and other religious texts do not cover, including childhood events and his emotional state when he struck the rock for water. This lacks the credibility of the other two documentaries.
Thought provoking in some parts and a tepid in others, The Ten Commandments is a fairly well-rounded series which mainly succeeds in examining one of the most pivotal events in religious history from a variety of perspectives.