The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
The revelation is provided quite early, in the Argentine, with an admirable division of the scene. There is a German son-in-law out for home and “super-culture”, there is a French son-in-law persuaded to return home so his daughter can dance and the boy paint.
The horsemen ride through heaven, it ends in the trenches or more properly the graveyards of the Armistice.
A very influential film, one can follow its workings through the years to Glenville’s The Comedians, for example, among many others.
The miracle of the Marne is represented dramatically. Desnoyers left France in his youth, a socialist and pacifist, now he buys crazily to fill his castle in Villeblanche. The Germans bomb and shatter the town, commandeer the castle, a fatal act of resistance heralds the dawn.
Valentino fulminates in a low dive where he shows up the house tango partner, he subsequently keeps an atelier in Paris with a bevy of models and a mistress who is married to one of his father’s friends. The Germans practice war and motherhood for war.
The precise moment that ends the film has young Desnoyers and young Hartrott, each with a pistol in his hand, recognize each other by the light of a flare in the sky on a dark night of rain and mud in no man’s land, an artillery shell obliterates them just then.
The parents survive, and so does the husband blinded in action. Universal grief and an admonition close the epilogue.
Among the cast are Alice Terry as the mistress, Alan Hale the elder Hartrott (in his last scene an amazing Germanic likeness), Wallace Beery the occupying officer, and many who tell the merciless story to perfection, such as the suitor to a girl with a tiny trimmed poodle he is most anxious to get out of the way.
Paris, a gargoyle’s view.
The monstrous sculpture cracks apart and buries Margaret Dauncey, sculptress, in clay, a well-filmed bit of poetic justice that is only the commencement.
The title character needs a virgin’s blood for his alchemical formula.
After The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, a somewhat less cataclysmic meditation on art and culture.
She’s the girl that broke the bank at Monte Carlo!
A nut, the title character.
The great experiment in the high tower is averted by her betrothed, there where automobiles cannot reach.
It ends in flames like any Frankenstein, still more, it ends quite exploded.