The Death of Saul (1912)

La mort de Saül (original title)
This film tells the dramatic story of the death of this famous Bible character and his trip to the witch of Endor, who forecasted his tragic end. The story is dramatic in the extreme and beautifully played.


Henri Andréani


Louis Ravet


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Cast overview:
Louis Ravet Louis Ravet


David has returned from defeating the Philistines, and has claimed the daughter of King Saul for his wife. But Saul is becoming increasingly jealous and angry over David's popularity, leading David to flee to avoid the king's wrath. The increasingly unstable king soon resorts to violence in his efforts to harm his young rival. Written by Snow Leopard

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Plot Keywords:

biblical | See All (1) »


Drama | Short

User Reviews

Creditable Job of Filming An Interesting Subject
8 March 2005 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

The story of David and Saul is an interesting and ambitious choice of material, and this short feature does a creditable job of filming it. The story has plenty of action, plus some significant psychological themes, and this movie succeeds in bringing out at least some of both.

One reason for the film's interest is the hand-tinted color. Much of it has now faded, unfortunately, but some of the color sequences have held up pretty well. A number of times, the movie effectively uses red, smoky tinting, both as a visual effect and in establishing an atmosphere. One of the later outdoor sequences also has a good variety of colors.

The story is based on the biblical accounts of King Saul's jealousy and anger towards David, and it follows the often turbulent events that resulted. The original story, while sometimes quite violent, is actually a very interesting character study, in the contrast between David's youthful innocence and Saul's increasingly desperate, frustrated envy.

In this feature, the character of Saul is the one that works the best. The acting of most or all of the cast is very demonstrative, with a lot of extravagant gestures, and this works better for a character like Saul, whose mind is falling apart more and more as the story proceeds. The portrayal of David does not work quite so effectively, since it would take more subtle gestures to bring out the most significant aspects of his personality.

Despite this and some other drawbacks, the color and the interesting subject matter make this worth seeing, at least for those with a serious interest in silent movies and their historical development.

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Release Date:

25 June 1912 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Death of Saul See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Pathé Frères See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Black and White (hand-colored)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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