King David (1985)



Director:      Bruce Beresford

Starring:     Richard Gere (David),  Edward Woodward (excellent as King Saul), Alice Krige (Bathsheba),  Denis Quilley (Samuel),  Niall Buggy (Nathan),  Cherie Lunghi (Michal),  Hurd Hatfield (Ahimelech),  Jack Klaff (Jonathan).


Historical Background:


The Golden Age of Israel

1000 to 960 B.C.  

David, the son of Jesse and descendant of Ruth, became king of Israel after the death of King Saul, beginning the golden age of Israel.  David forges the tribes of Israel into a united nation. (A power vacuum in both Egypt and Mesopotamia made this possible.)

David extends Israel's lands in the north, triumphing over Israel's enemies the Canaanites and the Philistines. Prosperity followed. David needed a more centrally located capital for his enlarged nation.  So he chooses an area on the northern border of Judah, the city of Jerusalem (City of Peace), but the Jebusites (Canaanites) held the city.  David finds a way to enter the fortified city, via a water shaft. Joab, the son of Zeruiah, goes up the shaft and with his troops conquers the city.  David moves the Ark of the Covenant to Mount Moriah, next to the city.

The prophet Samuel anoints David, youngest son of Jesse, to be king after Saul dies.

Saul makes David his musician.  David slays the giant Goliath, the Philistine.  Saul becomes jealous of David and tries to kill him. David flees abroad.  When Saul dies in battle, David returns to Judah where he is made king over Judah. He unites the tribes of  Israel and rules over the entire nation.

King David is succeeded by his son Solomon (-960 to -925), who builds Yahweh Temple in Jerusalem; under his rule, the country reaches the height of its civilization.


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