The best Charlton Heston movies of all time prove that he was one of the greatest actors ever along with being one of the most well-known names. Active from 1941 to 2003, Heston appeared in over 100 of the course of his career. Many of his roles have immortalized him in cinema history. In addition, he’s probably one of the highest grossing movie actors of all time when adjusted for inflation.
Born in 1923, Charlton Heston was born John Charles Carter to Lilla (née Charlton) and Russell Whitford Carter. After his parents divorced when he was 10 and his mother later remarried and took on the surname of Heston. He earned a drama scholarship to Northwestern University and went on to enlist with the Army Air Forces in 1944. Following his service, he acted in stage productions and had a number of roles on television.
His first film appearance was as the leading man in the 1950 noir film Dark City, though it was not his breakout role. That wasn’t until 1952, when he starred in The Greatest Show on Earth. From that point, he had a flurry of roles, many of which are still fondly remembered. After all, he was none other than Ben Hur and Moses. Plus, he had the unforgettable line "Take your stinking paws off me, you damn dirty ape!"
So what are the best Charlton Heston films ever? Is it Ben Hur or Planet of the Apes? See what fans have ranked as their favorite Charlton Heston movies below. Movie trailers have been included if you want a preview of the film. If you think the best Heston role isn't at the top, then vote it up. Don’t see it listed? Add it so that others may vote for it. After all, this list of the best Charlton Heston movies should be as a comprehensive as possible.
Tim Burton and Orson Welles both worked with Charlton Heston over the years, as have plenty of other well-known directors. Movie fans who love Charlton Heston have also been known to enjoy films starring George Burns and Charles Bronson.
- Ben-Hur is a 1959 American epic historical drama film, directed by William Wyler, produced by Sam Zimbalist for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Hugh ...more
- Complex sociological themes run through this science-fiction classic about three astronauts marooned on a futuristic planet where apes rule and humans are slaves. The stunned trio discovers that ...more
- Enjoying a life of ease in the court of Egypt's pharaoh, Moses (Charlton Heston) discovers his Hebrew heritage and, later, God's expectations of him. He dedicates himself to liberating his people ...more
- When a car bomb explodes on the American side of the U.S./Mexico border, Mexican drug enforcement agent Miguel Vargas (Charlton Heston) begins his investigation, along with American police captain ...more
- Soylent Green is a 1973 American science fiction film directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Charlton Heston, Leigh Taylor-Young, and, in his final film, Edward G. Robinson. The film combines the ...more
- Led by a former TV newscaster (Anthony Zerbe), light-sensitive mutants stalk the last normal man (Charlton Heston) on Earth.
- Spain is overrun by the Moors and the country's only hope rests in a heroic knight known as El Cid (Charlton Heston). He knows a divided Spain cannot stand and implores his countrymen to unify in ...more
- The Agony and the Ecstasy is a 1965 film directed by Carol Reed, starring Charlton Heston as Michelangelo and Rex Harrison as Pope Julius II. The film was partly based on Irving Stone's biographical ...more
- Moved by lonely letters written to her brother by cocoa plantation owner Christopher Leiningen (Charlton Heston), New Orleans widow Joanna (Eleanor Parker) agrees to marry Christopher by proxy. Upon ...more
- "The Greatest Show on Earth" is a dazzling spectacle of life behind the scenes with Ringling Bros.-Barnum and Bailey Circus, the best three-ring circus in the land. Celebrates the extravagant ...more
- In 1883, William Gladstone (Ralph Richardson), Britain's prime minister, enlists reputable Gen. Gordon (Charlton Heston) to smooth over the situation in Sudan after a brutal battle has left several ...more
- The Three Musketeers is a 1973 film based on the novel by Alexandre Dumas, père. It was directed by Richard Lester and written by George MacDonald Fraser. It was originally proposed in the 1960s as a ...more
- When a major earthquake hits Los Angeles, the various residents of the city cope with the chaos and destruction. Successful architect Stewart Graff (Charlton Heston) argues with his demanding wife, ...more
- In this dramatization of the Battle of Midway during World War II, U.S. Navy Adm. Chester Nimitz (Henry Fonda) leads an outnumbered unit in the Pacific to break Japanese encryption codes. They soon ...more
- Major Dundee is a 1965 Western film directed by Sam Peckinpah and starring Charlton Heston, Richard Harris, Jim Hutton, and James Coburn. Written by Harry Julian Fink, the film is about a Union ...more
- During the 1898 Alaska gold rush, John Thornton (Charlton Heston) and his partner, Pete (Raimund Harmstorf), deliver mail and supplies to remote mining outposts using a sled-dog team led by Buck, a ...more
- When aging loner Will Penny (Charlton Heston) is hired to ride the lines around a vast ranch, he stumbles upon Catherine Allen (Joan Hackett) and her son, who are secretly living in an abandoned ...more
- Julius Caesar is a 1970 British independent film adaptation of William Shakespeare's play, directed by Stuart Burge from a screenplay by Robert Furnival. The film stars Charlton Heston, Jason Robards ...more
- From his birth in Bethlehem to his death and eventual resurrection, the life of Jesus Christ (Max von Sydow) is given the all-star treatment in this epic retelling. Major aspects of Christ's life are ...more
- Lighthearted sequel to the 1973 hit "The Three Musketeers", with King Louis XIII's four swashbuckling heroes engaged in further chivalrous and daring adventures. Once again they do battle with the ...more
- The Big Country is a 1958 American epic Western film directed by William Wyler and starring Gregory Peck, Jean Simmons, Carroll Baker, Charlton Heston and Burl Ives. The supporting cast features ...more
- When ship captain John Sands (Charlton Heston) encounters the Mary Deare, an apparently abandoned ship, on the open seas, he hopes to salvage the wreck. Boarding the vessel, however, Sands finds that ...more
- Chrysagon (Charlton Heston), a powerful knight, is sent to defend a coastal village. He falls in love with Bronwyn (Rosemary Forsyth), who has been promised to Marc (James Farentino). Chrysagon is ...more
- Three Violent People is a 1957 American western movie starring Charlton Heston, Anne Baxter and Tom Tryon.
- Secret of the Incas is a 1954 adventure film starring Charlton Heston as adventurer Harry Steele, on the trail of an ancient Incan artifact. Shot on location at Machu Picchu in Peru, the film is ...more