"A Story of God’s Provision and Protection"
What You Need To Know:
Despite the star power of Orson Welles as Saul, this mildly entertaining Italian-produced movie comes across as low-budget and poorly acted. Instead of bringing depth to character and story, it skims over them. That said, DAVID AND GOLIATH reminds viewers how God worked in David’s life, and how God watched over Israel. Some liberties are taken, but nothing that strongly skews the story from the truth. Moderate violence occurs, mostly from battle scenes, and David striking Goliath dead. The Philistine king’s pagan worship is shown briefly. For these reasons, DAVID AND GOLIATH warrants caution for younger children.
(BBB, CC, Pa, VV, N, A, M) Very strong biblical worldview with strong redemptive qualities about the story of David from the Old Testament, including God is acknowledged as the King of Kings who is to be obeyed and characters offer prayer to God, but Philistine king practices a pagan sacrificial ceremony where a dead squid is thrown onto a fire, and Philistine king announces that “the only god is gold”; no foul language; strong violence includes a girl is struck by lightning and killed, a dead squid is put onto a fire, Goliath throws several spears at David, David strike’s Goliath’s face with a stone via slingshot and draws blood, David uses Goliath’s sword to kill him, but the act itself is not shown, two armies fight in a battle, but nothing graphic is shown, King Saul shoots an arrow at his army captain and kills him; no sex; natural upper male nudity in several scenes; some wine drinking at meals and feasts; no smoking or drugs; and, army captain wants to get rid of David and devises a plot to have him killed.
DAVID AND GOLIATH presents the 1961 Italian-produced movie version in a digitally re-mastered format.
The story opens with the Prophet Samuel paying a visit to King Saul and warning him God isn’t pleased with his rule over Israel. In a recent battle, Saul managed to lose the sacred Arc of Alliance to the Philistine army. Moreover, Saul has begun to turn his back on God. A new king will rise up, greater than him, and he will come from the humble town of Bethlehem. Saul is clearly shaken at this news.
Meanwhile, as David tends to his flock of sheep on the hillsides of Bethlehem, the woman he loves is struck by lightning and dies. Though he’s heartbroken, his spirits are lifted when Samuel prophesies that David is to be the next king.
Leaving behind his family, David travels to Jerusalem in order to fulfill God’s calling for his life. When he arrives, David is struck by the godlessness he sees, especially the poor treatment of he people by the authorities. He rouses the crowds to protest against the backslidden government and draws the attention of Saul.
Once in Saul’s domain, David becomes his advisor and comforts the king with his harp. Saul is aware that David is the one to succeed him on the throne. Abner, Saul’s army captain, plots a scheme to get rid of David by convincing Saul to send him as an emissary to the Philistine army. He plays both sides by also talking Goliath into fighting with the Philistines in return for riches and all the women he wants. Saul sends David to the battlefield, where he’s personally challenged to fight Goliath.
Despite the star power of Orson Welles, this Italian-produced movie comes across as low-budget and poorly acted. Most of the dialogue is overdubbed and out of sync with the actors’ mouths. The sets and costumes look cheesy at times. Though the plot is taken from the Bible, the script has a superficial feel. Instead of bringing depth to character and story, it skims over them in a disappointing way. To be fair, some scenes were cut from this DVD version that might have provided more of what’s missing. However, it is mildly entertaining and would be a decent time-filler on a rainy afternoon.
DAVID AND GOLIATH does enough justice to the biblical account that it serves as a reminder of how God worked in David’s life, and how God watched over the nation of Israel. David prays for King Saul and remains obedient to his calling despite fear and danger. However, the filmmakers take some liberties with the story in their script, but nothing that strongly skews the story away from the original biblical text. There is moderate violence, mostly surrounding battle scenes, and David striking Goliath dead. Pagan worship by the Philistine king is depicted briefly. For these reasons, caution is recommended for younger children.