Wholly Moses


Harvey and Zoey, two tourists travelling through Israel, discover an ancient scroll describing the life of Herschel, the man who was almost Moses. Herschel receives the command from God to free his people from Egyptian slavery, but Moses keeps blundering by and taking all the credit. Several other biblical stories, such as Lot and his wife, David and Goliath, and the miracles of Jesus, are also parodied in this story of the life of a man trying to follow the path to God, but somehow always seeming to lose his way.


I am always looking for good comedies, spoofs, satires, parodies, etc. So, when a friend of mine suggested that I check out Wholly Moses, I figured, why not.

Apparently, this is one of those pictures that has cult garnered cult status, but I had never heard of it until my friend mentioned it.

If you like Mel Brooks’ films, then you’ll love this, even though it isn’t one of his works.

The good…a capable comedic cast led by Dudley Moore that takes the material to another level of hilarity. This film proves that it doesn’t take a bunch of fancy special effects and a ridiculous budget to make a good comedy, something that is forgotten in today’s Hollywood. The story is great, and sure to offend the insanely religious. Oh well, they can get over it.

The bad…Moses is mentioned in like every scenes, but we never rally see him, except for maybe twice. I realize that this isn’t his movie and all, but you’d think they’d have at least thrown him in there a bit more. Richard Pryor’s appearance at the end seems a bit out of place. Not that he gives a bad performance, it just doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the film. THe papyrus that Moore and Laraine Newman read in that cave seems very well-preserved for having been in a cave for 2000 yrs or so. What’s worse is that as soon as it hits the outside air it dissolves to nothing. I don’t know much about the mechanics and biology of ancient papyrus and whatnot,but something doesn’t seem right about that. 

Wholly Moses is a hilarious farce in the same vein of films such as Mel Brooks’ History of the World, pt. I. While it doesn’t quite measure up to that film, this tale is quite entertaining and had me rolling around more than once. Is it a must-see? I can’t say that, but it is definitely far from being a waste of time. If you’re in the mood for a good comedy, why not check it out?

4 out of 5 stars

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