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Solomon and Sheba (1959)

Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 25 December 1959 (USA)
After becoming king of ancient Israel, Solomon faces threats coming from his jealous dispossessed brother Adonijah, the Egyptian Pharaoh and the scheming Queen of Sheba.

Director:

King Vidor

Writers:

Crane Wilbur (story), Anthony Veiller (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Yul Brynner ... Solomon
Gina Lollobrigida ... Sheba
George Sanders ... Adonijah
Marisa Pavan ... Abishag
David Farrar ... Pharaoh
John Crawford ... Joab
Finlay Currie ... David
Harry Andrews ... Baltor
José Nieto ... Ahab (as Jose Nieto)
Maruchi Fresno ... Bathsheba
William Devlin William Devlin ... Nathan
Jack Gwillim ... Josiah
Jean Anderson ... Takyan
Laurence Naismith ... Hezrai (as Lawrence Naismith)
Julio Peña ... Zadok (as Julio Pena)
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Storyline

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 <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In the Sweeping Wonder of Super Technirama 70 See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1959 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Salomon und die Königin von Saba See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$12,200,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although extremely rare, this is not the only time that a major character had to be recast in a Hollywood film after the filming was almost or entirely completed. For instance, after Ridley Scott's "All the Money in the World (2017) " was entirely done, the film's major co-star, Kevin Spacey, had to be replaced with Christopher Plummer due to a sex scandal. Save for possibly one or two long shots, all of Spacey's scenes were then reshot in nine days with Plummer. Incidentally, Plummer happened to have been Scott's original choice for Spacey's role. Also, Michael J. Fox had to infamously replace Eric Stoltz as Marty McFly in the first Back to the Future movie, even though at least one third of the movie was already completed with Stoltz in the role, because the filmmakers thought that Stoltz's Marty was simply coming off as too serious. See more »

Goofs

Several characters refer to God as "Jehovah," the Latin name for God. "Yahweh" is the Hebrew name. See more »

Quotes

Sheba: This Solomon the Almighty... Almighty what? Twenty men surrounding him, and he calls it a private audience.
Takyan: He has entertained you royally...
Sheba: And those state banquets! I at one end, he at the other. And in between us, a lot of sour-faced old men. Not once have I been with him alone. Not once.
Takyan: But we have only been here five days.
Sheba: This Solomon is more difficult to approach than the Pharaoh of Egypt. This great king has time for everything, except the time for being a man.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Judgment of Solomon (1909) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Kind Vidor's last movie is worth a look.
16 March 2004 | by raskimonoSee all my reviews

A heavy budget, a star that died with 75% of the movie completed. Recipe for disaster right, not in this case as Yul Brynner, the "great bald one" as he was known , except with hair here makes a convincing Solomon and Vidor scores in his direction. This movie sets itself up from the beginning as the story of two brothers and a case for redemption for that is what this movie is about. Solomon as everyone, Christian or not knows was wise as the common adage states. He inherited the Kingdom of Israel from his father as chosen by God to replace his older brother, the warrior played by the great supporting and sometimes leading man George Sanders in one his nefarious performances. Solomon prays for wisdom which God grants him and Israel prospers. Neighbors become jealous and scared as a redeemed Sanders courtesy of Brynner builds Israel's army to a sizable number. They also fear their teachings of equality to all men and their notion of One God. Sheba is sent or chooses to tempt Solomon with riveting consequences. The problem with these movies in our modern eyes is that the writers have them talk in the way texts and related scriblings depicted dialogue back then which is as poetry with innuendoes and rhyme. This today is often seen as camp, such the case of recent Swords and Sandals like Gladiator avoiding these dialogue. The movie also bears a certain resemblance to De Mille's classic Samson and Delilah which kickstarted the whole genre. That said, a "Shield of light" action sequence is worth a look to see how it was staged and shot. Gina Lollobrigida is absolutely stunningly photographed and the performance is quite good. All in the one, one of the master's last can be your first intro into his ouevre.


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