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The Ethiopian King Samlak offers his daughter Makeda to the powerful Pharaoh Amenes in order to secure peace between the two countries. What was intended as a political move ends as a debacle. Instead of Makeda, Amenes chooses Samlak's beautiful slave girl Theonis. Nevertheless, Amenes can not secure the love of Theonis as she is in love with the young Egyptian Ramphis. Having suffered humiliation, the Ethiopians declare war on Egypt. Amenes is injured in a battle and perishes - but only seemingly. The happy union between Theonis and Ramphis is in peril when Pharaoh Amenes returns to claim his wife and his throne. Written by
Peculiar alterations were made to the original German version in the Russian, Italian and US release versions: The Russian version shows the Pharaoh as a tyrannical ruler; harsh and despotic. The Italian version, on the other hand, emphasizes the love-stricken, vulnerable Pharaoh. He eventually loses his power as a result of his love for the beautiful slave girl. Presumably, this portrayal was not acceptable in Russia at the time and the film was edited accordingly. In the US release version the film ends with Ramphis's rise to power and the happy union between him and Theonis. The return of the Pharaoh and the subsequent tragedy is omitted in favor of a happy ending to satisfy the expectations of the US audiences. See more »
When he is reigning as Pharoah, Amenes (Emil Jannings) has a shaved head. When he reappears after having been thought dead, he has a full head of hair. See more »
Imressive German epic from Ernst Lubitsch about the war that breaks out when an Ethiopian King (Paul Wegener) offers his daughter to a Pharaoh (Emil Jannings) but she then falls his love with one of his servants. THE LOVES OF PHARAOH is a very impressive silent thanks in large part to the wonderful visuals and mammoth sets, which certainly make this rank right up there with the work that D.W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille were doing around this same time. I think the most impressive thing is how massive the sets are and how many extras were used during the battle sequences. There are some moments here that make you want to pause the film just so you can get a better look of everything that's going on. The greatest sequence comes towards the end of the picture when we see a giant hill where the camera is pointing straight at it. The action then starts and you see hundreds of people at the bottom of the hill fighting with hundreds more coming from over the hill, down in and into the battle. These scenes are just so big that you can't help but wonder how long it must have taken just to get one shot. The performances are another major plus with Jannings doing an excellent job with the villain. I thought he was extremely believable in the part and he never goes overboard with his madness. I also really enjoyed seeing Wegener here as the "look" from THE GOLEM is still here. Lubitsch does a masterful job at building up all the action but I think the film's one flaw is the screenplay. I never really cared about any of the characters and I found the story to be a tad bit too dull for its own good. Several portions of the film are still missing so photos are put in the missing segments place.
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