6.8/10
6,971
73 user 27 critic

Samson and Delilah (1949)

Approved | | Drama, History, Romance | 21 September 1950 (Italy)
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

Writers:

Jesse Lasky Jr. (screenplay) (as Jesse L. Lasky Jr.), Fredric M. Frank (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Hedy Lamarr ... Delilah
Victor Mature ... Samson
George Sanders ... The Saran of Gaza
Angela Lansbury ... Semadar
Henry Wilcoxon ... Ahtur
Olive Deering ... Miriam
Fay Holden ... Hazelelponit
Julia Faye ... Hisham
Russ Tamblyn ... Saul (as Russell Tamblyn)
William Farnum ... Tubal
Lane Chandler ... Teresh
Moroni Olsen ... Targil
Francis McDonald ... Story Teller (as Francis J. McDonald)
William 'Wee Willie' Davis ... Garmiskar (as William Davis)
John Miljan ... Lesh Lakish
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Storyline

Though his people, the Israelites, are enslaved by the Philistines, Samson (Victor Mature), strongest man of the tribe of Dan, falls in love with the Philistine Semadar (Dame Angela Lansbury), whom he wins by virtue of a contest of strength. But Semadar betrays him, and Samson engages in a fight with her real love, Ahtur (Henry Wilcoxon), and his soldiers. Semadar is killed, and her sister Delilah (Hedy Lamarr), who had loved Samson in silence, now vows vengeance against him. She plans to seduce Samson into revealing the secret of his strength and then to betray him to the Philistine leader, The Saran of Gaza (George Sanders). Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HISTORY'S MOST BEAUTIFUL AND TREACHEROUS WOMAN! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cecil B. DeMille wanted to shoot the background scenes in Israel, where the story took place, but couldn't because of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. He eventually decided to send a camera crew on a trip to North Africa that lasted two months. The crew brought back film footage shot in twenty towns and cities in Morocco and Algeria (from Casablanca to Algiers), as well as suitable props for this movie. See more »

Goofs

A boy in Samson's village is named "Saul." Samson hints or predicts that one day he will be king of Israel. The script states repeatedly that Samson was a "Danite" (member of the Tribe of Dan). The Bible states King Saul was a member of the Tribe of Benjamin and grew up near Jerusalem (not in Dan's territory). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: Before the dawn of history, ever since the first man discovered his soul, he has struggled against the forces that sought to enslave him. He saw the awful power of nature rage against him. The evil eye of the lightning... The terrifying voice of the thunder... The shrieking, wind-filled darkness enslaving his mind with shackles of fear. Fear bred superstition, blinding his reason. He was ridden by a host of devil gods. Human dignity perished on the altar of idolatry. And tyranny ...
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Crazy Credits

As Samson and Delilah (1949) starts, the title is written on scroll, that is opened, to be read. The remaining opening credits, after the scroll and title, are normal. Closing credits are normal, also. See more »

Alternate Versions

Previous home media releases of the film (LaserDisc, VHS) did not include the overture and exit music. They were restored for Paramount's official DVD release in 2013 and the subsequent Blu-ray release in 2014. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Here's Lucy: Lucy and Carol Burnett (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

The Fat Philistine Merchant
(uncredited)
Written by Victor Young and Jesse Lasky Jr.
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User Reviews

 
Not bad, beautiful Hedy Lamarr and the final scene steal the film
13 April 2010 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

While having some very major flaws, this is a thoroughly decent biblical epic on the story of Samson and Delilah. It is nicely filmed, with lovely costumes, nice sets and good cinematography and has a rousing score. Also the acing is not bad at all, Victor Mature is a dashing Samson and Hedy Lamarr pretty much steals the film as the beautifully captivating Delilah, it somehow reminded me of Rita Hayworth in Salome. George Sanders proves here he is the epitome of calculation and world-weariness, and while Angela Lansbury is good she has been better. Plus the final scene with the temple coming down is brilliantly staged and serves as the highlight of the film. However, the script is not always that great, neither is the pacing which is quite slow or the direction which is disappointingly stodgy. Overall though, Samson and Delilah isn't bad, it could've been better, but it was decent. 7/10 Bethany Cox


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 September 1950 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Cecil B. DeMille's Samson and Delilah See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (with overture and exit music) |

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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