Giovanni Pastrone, 1914
Cabiria is considered the greatest Italian silent movie epic and was the first film to be screened at the White House.
The story unfolds during the Punic Wars in the third century BC. Little Cabiria (Lidia Quaranta) is kidnaped by Phoenician pirates and taken to Carthage to be sacrificed. She is saved by a Roman patrician, Fulvius Axilla, and his slave, who deliver her to Queen Sophonisba. When Carthage is conquered by the Romans, Cabiria returns home with Fulvius, with whom she has meanwhile fallen in love, a love that is mutual.