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Solomon and Sheba 1959
Description: Under the rule of Lord David, Israel is united and prosperous although surrounded by opponents including Egypt and its allies. The aging Lord David favors his younger son, Solomon, as his successor, but David's elder son Prince Adonijah, a warrior, declares himself King. When David learns of this, he publicly announces Solomon to be his successor. Adonijah and Joab, his general, withdraw in rage. Israel prospers under Lord Solomon's wise and benevolent rule and is seen as a threat to more tyrannical monarchs in the region. The Pharaoh of Egypt agrees to cede a Red Sea port to the Queen of Sheba in a plot to undermine Solomon's rule. Sheba is to seduce Solomon and introduce Sheban pagan worship into Jerusalem. Meanwhile, Prince Adonijah, actually banished, also conspires with Pharaoh and is given an units to conquer Solomon. The movie is a highly fictionalized dramatization of happenings depicted in The Bible -- First Lords chapter 10 and Second Chronicles chapter 9.
Released: 25 Dec 1959 Director: King Vidor Writers: Crane Wilbur (story), Anthony Veiller (screenplay), Paul Dudley (screenplay), George Bruce (screenplay) Actors: Yul Brynner, Gina Lollobrigida, George Sanders, Marisa Pavan Genres: Drama, History, Romance, War
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Solomon and Sheba Reviews:

Holy Cow! I watched "Solomon and Sheba" the another day on TCM, and I fully LOVED it! It is very Biblically inaccurate (there was NOTHING between Solomon and the queen of Sheba, just a conversation!), but a lot of fun!Yul Brynner is one of my favourite actors to watch on screen; he is sexy, charismatic, over the top, and has that whacked out ambiguous accent. His ability to believably enjoy just about any nationality and role is very evident in his role as the Hebrew lord in this film; even though he seems a tiny out of place. I wonder why they chose him to replace Tyrone Power? Is it just me, or did he never smile in this or any another movie? Sexy!!!!!Gina Lollobrigia is waaaaaaaaaay hot in this movie! As the erotically inclined, temptress queen, she heats up the screen and blows everyone else out of the water! She and Brynner look very nice together, and their love scenes are some of the HOTTEST I've seen in a 50's film (especially the wonderful steamy one at the pagan orgy-WOW!)! Gina has Vulcan eyebrows! I've never seen her in anything else, but I hope I can! She's as va-va-voom as Sophia Loren!Other than these two hot actors, everybody else in the film SUCKS. George Sanders is like a dull imitation of a villain-yawn! I got bored with the overlong war scenes, most of which had no Historical basis at all! Errrrrggh!Overall, I give "Solomon and Sheba" an 8 out of 10, it could be a 6 but the sexiness and eroticism of the love storyline brings it up to an 8. If you like pointless epics with some sexuality thrown in, then I definitely suggest this film to you. It is a nice method to waste a boring afternoon alone!


I saw this on its original release as a child. My mother, a nice film buff, was greatly excoriated by another members of the family for taking me along when she went shopping in downtown Manila and decided to see it. The reason? It was classified as either for adults only or more likely as "Objectionable in part for all" by the Legion of Decency. Why? There was this exotic belly dance by Gina Lollobrigida. Then there was this bathing stage which although did not present much skin had her rising out of the pool while her serving maids obstructed the view with a huge cloth. As she wrapped the cloth around her shapely body, she told in a very sexy voice and tone: "Dry me." I narrated this stage to my terrible mates who couldn't afford to go to a first run film but they didn't receive excited. I saw a re-run of the film on a religious channel recently and I didn't see the belly dance scene.This is the only another film where I saw Yul Brynner with hair. He also had hair in The Sound and the Fury.But actually let's receive serious. There is no mention in the bible of the Queen of Sheba as a temptress and spy for the Pharoah. All it tells is that she was an admirer of Solomon who brought him lots of valuable bonuses when she visited him to learn from his wisdom. If there could be a re-make of this film, it is recommended that Sheba be played by a black actress as we actually know that Sheba was in what is actually modern Ethiopia and even in those days, the inhabitants of that zone were black. Also, Sheba was not the name of a queen but of the country that the "Kandake" (a game from which the name Candace is derived) ruled. Another than her title, therefore, we do not know the name of the Candace of Sheba.


Breathtaking storyline set in Biblical times with emphasis in lavish costumes and crowds . Justly before his death in ancient Israel Lord David (Finlay Currie) has a vision from God telling him that his younger son Solomon (Yul Brynner) could succeed him as lord . His another son Adonijah (George Sanders) is mean and promises to achieve the kingdom by whatever method . Lord David names his younger son, Solomon his heir , facing his older son Adonijah. Lord Solomon acts with wisdom and benevolent and his government is seen as a threat to more tyrannical monarchs in the region . Meanwhile the Egyptian Pharoah agrees to give up a Red Sea port to the Queen of Sheba (Gina Lollobrigida) if she can encounter a manner to overthrow Solomon . Sheba, Pharoah, Adonijah, the leaders of the Twelve Tribes and his own God create life risky for Solomon . Meantime the Queen of Sheba arrives in Jerusalem, supposedly for a friendly meeting , Solomon slowly falls in love with her. In fact, the Queen is in covenant with the Pharaoh of Egypt (David Farrar) and her aim is to destroy the twelve tribes of Israel and he utilizes the ambitious Prince Adonijah in her schemes .An overblown all-star treatment of the stories in the Old Testament dealing with David , Salomon , Sheba and Adonijah . Lavish spectacle about Solomon and his lover Sheba based on hokey historical events. Brynner and Lollobrigida enjoy a sultriest couple , including some sexy scenes very erotic for the 50s . Tyrone Power died during the shooting in Spain and some shots still present him , he was replaced by Brynner who remade his early scenes .There's so much visual padding full of armours , weapons, carriages , feathers and crowd scenes . Director Vidor gives this movie the feel of a Cecil B. De Mille spectacle , but there is tiny human touch to any of the deeds. Very nice photography in super Technirama 70 by the classic cameraman Freddie Young filmed in Madrid, Valdespartera, Zaragoza, Aragón, Spain . Evocative and impressive musical score by Mario Nascimbene . Lord Vidor's last film that is recently restored to 139 mins . Vidor realized an perfect career plenty of classics as ¨Bird of paradise , Champ , Our everyday bread , The citadel , Duel in the sun ; also directed other super-production as ¨War and Peace¨ . Rating : 6 , passable and acceptable.



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