A young Hebrew named Micah, unsatisfied with his father's rural life, demands his inheritance so he can try his luck in the city. Once in the city he falls under the spell of a beautiful pagan priestess who induces him to squander his money and betray his faith. Only after many trials and tribulations does Micah recover his senses and return home to his forgiving father. Written by
Lana Turner in her autobiography: [on "The Prodigal"] The Prodigal Son they named Micah, and to play him, chose Edmund Purdom, a young man with a remarkably high opinion of himself. His pomposity was hard enough to bear; worse yet was the garlic breath he brought back from lunch. My lines were so stupid I hated to go to work in the morning. Even the costumes were atrocious. They were ornate concoctions dripping with heavy beads, and the material was so stiff that I felt I was wearing armor. "Well," I thought, "I may be trapped in this picture, but I'm going to make myself as sensuous, sexy, and gorgeous as possible." See more »
I do not care where I've been. I only care where I am.
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In 70 BC, the middle eastern seaport city of Joppa is bustling with business. A major disruption occurs when handsome Edmund Purdom (as Micah) saves runaway slave James Mitchell (as Asham) from nasty Neville Brand (as Rhakim). A mute, Mr. Mitchell is wounded and taken home to live with Mr. Purdom's family. They worship one God (Jehovah), according to the opening narration; they are Hebrew. Going against his religion, Purdom is smitten with high priestess Lana Turner (as Samarra). An uncommon blonde, she worships the pagan Baal, male God of the flesh...
Our protagonist and star decides to leave home and "have" (sex with) Ms. Turner. Purdom takes Mitchell and relocates to Damascus. Turner's likewise aroused, but requires a payment of pearls, as is customary for Baal. Meanwhile, high priest Louis Calhern (as Nahreeb), the previous owner of Mitchell, desires revenge. Turner does little to justify her star billing. This is an adaptation of "The Prodigal Son" story from The New Testament, Luke 15: 11-32, which is mentioned in the introduction. It's only an average story, but competently produced and expensive looking.
***** The Prodigal (2/27/55) Richard Thorpe ~ Edmund Purdom, Lana Turner, James Mitchell, Louis Calhern
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