Salome is a 1908 silent short film that was inspired by and followed closely Oscar Wilde's Salome, an 1893 play that premiered on 11 February 1896 in Paris. The play, and film, are inspired by the story of King Herod being enchanted by Salome's dance and then grants her the wish for John the Baptist's head. This is also the first screen version of the story.
|Director||J. Stuart Blackton|
(Alternative) Salome; or, The Dance of the Seven Veils
(1908) Vitagraph Company of America
CategoriesBased on Play Based on the Bible Biblical Drama Black and White Dance Death Death of John the Baptist Herod Antipas John the Baptist Imprisoned Oscar Wilde Salome Short Silent Film ShortBased on Play, Based on the Bible, Biblical Drama, Black and White, Dance, Death, Death of John the Baptist, Herod Antipas, John the Baptist Imprisoned, Oscar Wilde, Salome, Silent Film
The descriptions are from "The Moving Picture World" magazine Vol. 3, 29. August 1908.
The Capture of John the Baptist
John the Baptist is observed with his followers trudging over the hilly country when he is set upon by the soldiers of the times, who bind him and lead him before the King.
Banquet of Herod
A long table is richly laden with golden goblets, fruits and delicacies. Herod, his wife, his step-daughter, Salome, a young man in love with the latter and others are drinking and laughing as John the Baptist is brought before them. The captive upbraids the King and his associates for their revelry, and for this presumption he is condemned to prison. Salome has fallen in love with the prisoner, and as he is led away she glides out after him.
John the Baptist Condemned to Prison
A large cistern serves as the place of confinement, and into this the soldiers drag their prisoner and compel him to descend. Salome, who has followed, pleads with the soldiers to let her see the prophet, but the request is refused.
Salome Begs the Love of John the Baptist
Outside the cistern Salome again implores the soldiers to bring the captive out. They finally consent and the prophet is brought before her. She kneels to him, kisses his hands and garments. He repulses her and reproaches her for her manner of living and her disregard for the Almighty. Salome is wild with anger at being thus spurned.
Herod Asks Salome to Dance
Herod and his Queen are seated on their throne. Salome approaches and the King asks her to dance. She consents, calls to the slaves to remove her sandals and she dances the dance of the seven veils, throwing each veil at the feet of Herod.
Salome Asks the Head of John the Baptist as Her Reward
Salome finishes the dance, approaches the King, kneels before him and indicates that he command the soldiers to bring her reward, the head of the prophet.
John the Baptist Taken Out of Prison
The soldiers repair to the cistern and, after much resistance, remove the prisoner.
John the Baptist is Beheaded
The prophet is brought before King Herod and his court. A black slave stands by with a huge axe. The King hesitates in giving the command, and Salome approaches with a silver tray and again demands her reward. The slaves depart to carry out the order.
Salome Receives Her Reward
The slave enters with the head of John the Baptist, kneels before the King, who commands him to give the reward to Salome.