I still remember how I was in love with Judah Ben-hur the first time I saw Ben-hur on HBO. I later came to know that for this role, Charlton Heston won the Academy Award (Best Actor). Almost everything about the film Ben-hur still remains etched in my mind....the time when Ben-hur comes to see Messala and they drink together, crossing their hands in a peculiar manner (symbolic of their friendship), the tender kiss between Judah and Esther, how Messala condemns Judah falsely to the galleys (because Judah's political views were different from him), his hardships as a slave, how his fortunes return when Arrius adopts him as a son and he is a free man again, his longing to return to his home, the famous chariot race.......the list is endless. I have lost count how many times I have watched this film after the first viewing. Each time I loved Judah Ben-hur more than before and salulated his undying spirit to fight back, his enormous zeal to be alive. Though Charlton Heston had played many roles and won acclaim (especially for playing Moses in The Ten Commandments), my favorite has always been Ben-hur.
Though I know that death is inevitable, the news that Charlton Heston is no more made me sad. May his soul rest in peace and his family be given strength to go through this phase.