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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 to attain the throne. Meanwhile the Egyptian Pharoah agrees to cede a Red Sea port to the Queen of Sheba if she can find a way to destroy Solomon, whose wisdom and benevolent rule is seen as a threat to more tyrannical monarchs in the region. Sheba, Pharoah, Adonijah, the leaders of the Twelve Tribes and his own God make life difficult for Solomon who is tempted by Sheba to stray.Written by
Ron Kerrigan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Solomon and Sheba" was the kind of film that you just had to go and see back in the late 50's when I was a kid: a biblical epic spectacular with well known performers, unusual costumes, lots of extras and battle sequences. So I went to see it; but I remember that back then "Solomon and Sheba" didn't impress me at all, which was a strange thing since I had enjoyed a lot "The Ten Commandments", "Quo Vadis", "Helen of Troy" and others. The point is that when you are a kid you disregard things in pictures that adults don't (bad acting, for instance) and you are easier to please with warriors in their armors, battles, sword duels and action, so if your'e not impressed then something is wrong with a product of this genre.
This film, though it has some of such features, is definitely standard and average. Yul Brynner's wooden performance as the Hebrew king doesn't even light when he has voluptuous and half naked Gina Lollobrigida dancing around him provocatively. She is better and renders an acceptable acting. George Sanders doesn't look interested in what he is doing, and Marisa Pavan (Pier Angeli's twin sister) doesn't add at all as a sort of Brynner's conscience.
The final sword duel between Brynner and Sanders is just for the plot and lacks interest and intensity (it had to filmed, that's all).
Not a good farewell for director King Vidor, Solomon and Sheba will probably be remembered as Ty Power's last unfinished picture.
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