David and Bathsheba (1951)

Approved  |   |  Drama, History, Romance  |  10 August 1951 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.1/10 from 1,324 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 6 critic

After King David sees the beautiful Bathsheba bathing from the palace roof, he enters into an adulterous affair which has tragic consequences for his family and Israel.



(written for the screen by)
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Writer Harry Street reflects on his life as he lies dying from an infection while on safari in the shadow of Mount Kilamanjaro.

Directors: Henry King, Roy Ward Baker
Stars: Gregory Peck, Susan Hayward, Ava Gardner
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The story picks up at the point where "The Robe (1953)" ends, following the martyrdom of Diana and Marcellus. Christ's robe is conveyed to Peter for safe-keeping, but the emperor Caligula ... See full summary »

Director: Delmer Daves
Stars: Victor Mature, Susan Hayward, Michael Rennie
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When strongman Samson rejects the love of the beautiful Philistine woman Delilah, she seeks vengeance that brings horrible consequences they both regret.

Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Stars: Hedy Lamarr, Victor Mature, George Sanders
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Shortly before his death in ancient Israel King David has a vision from God telling him that his younger son Solomon should succeed him as king. His other son Adonijah is unhappy and vows ... See full summary »

Director: King Vidor
Stars: Yul Brynner, Gina Lollobrigida, George Sanders
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Inspired by the scriptural tale. Moabitess priestess Ruth is drawn both to a Judean man and to his talk of a forgiving God. After tragedy strikes, she begins a new life in Bethlehem.

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Stuart Whitman, Tom Tryon, Peggy Wood
The Robe (1953)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Marcellus is a tribune in the time of Christ. He is in charge of the group that is assigned to crucify Jesus. Drunk, he wins Jesus' homespun robe after the crucifixion. He is tormented by ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Richard Burton, Jean Simmons, Victor Mature
Barabbas (1961)
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Barabbas, the criminal that Pontius Pilate induced the populace to vote to set free, so that Christ could be crucified, is haunted by the image of Jesus for the rest of his life.

Director: Richard Fleischer
Stars: Anthony Quinn, Silvana Mangano, Arthur Kennedy
King David (1985)
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

This is a movie about the life of Israel's king David.

Director: Bruce Beresford
Stars: Richard Gere, Edward Woodward, Alice Krige
King of Kings (1961)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The life of Jesus Christ.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Jeffrey Hunter, Siobhan McKenna, Hurd Hatfield
Night People (1954)
Adventure | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Post WWII yarn about a young GI abducted by the Soviets in West Berlin and hauled off to the East. His recovery gets complicated as Colonel Steve Van Dyke (Peck) tries to sort out the ... See full summary »

Director: Nunnally Johnson
Stars: Gregory Peck, Broderick Crawford, Anita Björk
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The story of president Andrew Jackson from his early years, the film begins when he meets Rachel Donaldson Robards. The plot concentrates on the scandal concerning the legality of their ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Levin
Stars: Susan Hayward, Charlton Heston, John McIntire
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A ruthless fashion designer steps on everyone in her way in order to reach the top of her profession. Eventually she is forced to choose between her ambition and the man she loves.

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: Susan Hayward, Dan Dailey, George Sanders


Complete credited cast:
Kieron Moore ...
John Sutton ...
Dennis Hoey ...


Though David has all the wealth, power, wives & children inherent for the King of Israel he does not have what he craves most: the true love of a woman who loves him as a man instead of as King. He is attracted to Bathsheba, the wife of one of his soldiers who is more devoted to army duty than to his wife. David & Bathsheba succumb to their feelings. Their affair, her resulting pregnancy, & David's resolve to have her husband killed so Bathsheba will be free to marry, bring the wrath of God upon the kingdom. David must rediscover his faith in God in order to save Bathsheba from death by stoning, his kingdom from drought & famine, & himself from his many sins. Written by E.W. DesMarais <jlongst@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

david | king | israel | love | sin | See All (62) »


Mighty as Goliath! See more »


Drama | History | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

10 August 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

David et Bethsabée  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Gregory Peck was a heavy drinker as a young actor in Hollywood. In 1949 he was hospitalized with heart spasms, and while filming David and Bathsheba (1951) he was hospitalized with a suspected heart attack. Though it turned out to be a palpitation brought on by his lifestyle and overwork, he began to drink less thereafter. However, he did not stop smoking for many more years. See more »


Peck wears the "Star of David" throughout the movie, which doesn't appear until the 3rd century CE and was not commonly used until the middle ages. See more »


King David: Michal, I cannot find it in my heart to blame you for what you do... but you, Absalom, my son, have I given you cause to hate me so?
See more »


Version of David and Goliath (1960) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The Most Literate Bibilcal Epic Yet; Glowing; Well-Produced; Dramatically Fine
5 July 2005 | by See all my reviews

This film is famous for several qualities: a literate script, for once in partly-religious film-making, by Philip Dunne, some very good performances, a first-rate production in every department and its intelligent direction by veteran Henry King. If one were making a film, then getting such talents as Leon Shamroy as cinematographer, Lyle Wheeler as art director and Alfred Newman as composer of original music would guarantee a quality production. Add the cast of this film, including Gregory Peck and Susan Hayward as the title characters, James Robertson Justice, Raymond Massey, Kieron Moore, Jayne Meadows and John Sutton plus a dance by Gwen Verdon and expectations might be raised that the resulting film could be made into something special. But in a biblical subject script, usually a sub-genre prone to illogical motivations and miraculous interventions, everything would ultimately depend on the author's skills. Philip Dunne here has supplied human beings, a rare achievement in biblical films. David is a man in this film, many-sided, not someone doing mythical deeds on paper in the Old Testament. Gregory Peck makes him curious, passionate, self-controlled, self-deprecating and appealing. As Bathsheba, Hayward is scarcely the perfect choice but conveys a good deal of common-sense earthiness and emotional normalcy that helps one see why the King of Israel would risk so much for her. The rest of the cast is stalwart and capable by turns. The familiar storyline provides them little to work with, but author Dunne and the cast do as much as is possible with the human situations. David's youth is told in flashback; how he was chosen by a Prophet of Yahweh to be King of Israel, and earns his way to be second to the king, Saul, by defeating Goliath the Phiiistine in battle when all else are afraid to beard the giant warrior. Thereafter, he finally is driven from the court of King Saul of Israel, becomes a famous warrior, and returns to claim the kingdom and become the instrument of death of Jonathan, the King's son, formerly a friend. His wars are successful-- the film opens in fact with a successful attack scene; but his life is empty since his wife Michal, Jayne Meadows, is Saul's daughter and is cold to him. He turns to Bathsheba, whom he sees from the palace roof bathing naked; later she admits she had hoped he would see her. But she has a husband, Uriah; when she becomes pregnant, it becomes necessary for Uriah to come in from the battlefield and spend time at home; he instead asks David to set him in the forefront of the battle, even after being aroused by Verdon's dance. David agrees. He is killed, a war hero; but this does not solve the infidelity question. Drought comes to Israel, and the king's infidelity is blamed for the phenomenon. At last, David places his hands on the Ark of the Covenant, recently brought to Jerusalem and housed in a temple, which has caused the death of others who accidentally came in contact with it, inviting his god to punish him--and nothing happens...David exits the temple, and finds that rain has come to his parched land. This film is always interesting, varied in its types of scenes and physically beautiful. The director and author make use of the observer principle, and are frankly more successful in humanizing the characters than in almost any film outside the Grecianized- Near Eastern canon, wherein the feat is a bit easier since neither miraculous nor religious themes are made central in such adventures. . Well-remembered for its glowing realization, fine performances and intelligent dialogue, this dramatic effort bears repeated study.

25 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Gregory Peck Jul150
Gregory Peck as Superman iniemaili
Lovely Film prklinect
The Ark of the Covenant. charl-eee-boy2012
Discuss David and Bathsheba (1951) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: