Strong evidence of the progress of the motion picture
A successful attempt to reproduce one of Shakespeare's greatest plays in motion pictures. Looking at a picture of this character one must recognize the limitations of the motion picture and realize that Shakespeare may suffer more than a drama written especially for the films. On the other hand, certain great qualities, perhaps one might say personal qualities, stand out in strong relief in Shakespeare's tragedies, and here there is no mistaking the lesson which the play itself teaches. To successfully present a drama of this importance argues a company capable of interpreting the great emotions of the human mind. The tragedies represent these emotions so clearly that once seen they can never be forgotten. And here the characteristic of the Moor of Venice, jealousy, is so plainly represented that it impresses one in an oppressive way. If the overmastering emotion or the personality of the principal character be sympathetically developed what the accessory characters do is of little importance. In this play Desdemona and Iago are successively important and it is essential that the parts be well taken. That a play of this character can be so satisfactorily placed on the screen is strong evidence of the progress of the motion picture. More than mere amusement is involved. It enables thousands to become acquainted with great dramatic masterpieces who would never otherwise know about them. One may read them many times, but not until they are produced by competent actors does one comprehend their meaning, or appreciate their marvelous delineations of human passion. To have successfully performed that is sufficient honor; and it has been done in this instance. - The Moving Picture World, April 30, 1910
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