When I was a boy, I loved The Ten Commandments. I must have gone to see it three or four times in the theatre, and it wasn’t because I was transfixed by the holiness and religious import of the Passover story. No, I had a crush on Anne Baxter.
In the film, she plays pharaoh’s sister, Nefertiti, who of course, is also, or will be his wife…but it’s Moses she loves. Visiting his slave quarters where he lives with his devoted wife after he has shirked court and high life, she tries once more to win him back before he’s off on the Exodus. “Oh, Moses, Moses, Moses…!” Can you imagine writing that? Unfortunately, I didn’t find a still of that scene, she in a stunning silver lame dress and lustrous black hair, enviously surveying the slave hut, a society girl who is risking all for her last chance at true love and happiness and hating the humble slave who has won a place besides Moses. Well, she needn’t be too envious: it’s obvious that Moses loves only his Calling now.
Personally, I think the influence of Art Deco is very clear in this film’s costuming.