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Hal Roach Jr.,
Lon Chaney Jr.
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Not bad but not very close to the Biblical account
This was an interesting film, I was expecting something that would be fairly Biblical in its storytelling, but although it was based on the Bible, some of the elements were out of order, missing, added to or changed too much for it to be an accurate representation of what the Bible tells us in the book of Judges about the life of Samson.
This film starts off when Samson is about to marry a Philistine woman (not Delilah, but his first wife) and after that some bits are missed out and Delilah comes into the scene early on before Samson marries his first wife. Yet the Bible makes no mention of her until long after she is dead.
I thought the acting was good, especially from the famous actor Max von Sydow, and Belinda Bauer was good as Delilah. And let's not forget that great actor Jose Ferrer who plays the high priest of Dagon.
This is an entertaining film, but I would have liked to see it follow the Bible more closely. If you want to see an account of Samson that follows the Bible, this is not it. For example, the Bible says that Samson did not have his hair cut or his beard shaved, in accordance with the vow he took, yet in the first scene we see Samson as a young man and clean shaven. His hair is long at the back, but on top and at the sides it looks normal, not long at all. The vow that he took where he was forbidden to cut his hair or shave, or drink alcohol, is very important to the story of Samson, and especially to how he eventually loses his strength when his hair and beard are shaved off. Yet in this film he drank wine and generally did not do the things the Bible tells. And in this film Delilah cuts off a small bit of his pony tail and he loses his strength, the Bible tells us that he was shaved by a professional barber hired by Delilah. And they missed out all the times when he tricked Delilah and did not tell her the true way to lose his strength, and the Philistines attacked him but he was still strong. So the filmmakers could have made this better and been more true to the true story of Samson, but instead I think they wanted a more romantic and idealistic story so they changed it. And there was too much of Delilah in the film overall, and too much of her showing in her revealing clothing and when she was naked.
5 out of 10, which is mostly for the good acting and generally well made film, but would be higher if they had followed the Bible more.
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