At 10 years old, Owens becomes a ragged orphan when his sainted mother dies. The Conways, who are next door neighbors, take Owen in, but the constant drinking by Jim soon puts Owen on the ... See full summary »
Anna Q. Nilsson,
Wealthy Elias Graves builds his home on the top of a hill, where a group of squatters have taken up residence at the bottom. Many of the men in the squatters' village have their eyes on ... See full summary »
Young Pauline is left a lot of money when her wealthy uncle dies. However, her uncle's secretary has been named as her guardian until she marries, at which time she will officially take ... See full summary »
When Reverend Robert Henley and his sister Faith arrive in the town of Hell's Hinges, saloon owner Silk Miller and his cohorts sense danger to their evil ways. They hire gunman Blaze Tracy ... See full summary »
This filmed version of Uncle Tom's Cabin is notable as the first time in cinema history an actual man of color was the lead
For only the second time since I first started writing these reviews for IMDb in 2006, I'm dedicating this particular month-Black History Month-to the films of African-Americans in front of and behind the camera in chronological order. So we're in 1914 with one of several adaptations from before and after of Harriet Beecher Stowe's "Uncle Tom's Cabin". A big difference between this one and previous versions, however, is that this marked the first time on film an actual man of color named Sam Lucas-who was also the first person to do so on stage-portrayed the title character. Though the movie as I watched on YouTube was choppily edited, the print wasn't always very clear, and there was a Spanish narration during the intertitles, this wasn't a bad version of the then-popular story. Even the embarrassing scenes involving the pickaninny Topsy were brief enough to not cause too much harm. And seeing Lucas doing his melodramatic turns was at least interesting enough in observing what kind of performances was considered effective then. Oh, and while I noticed many Caucasions also playing people of color, I noticed one other of Sam's race playing a slave Tom refuses to whip. Too bad he's not identified on the IMDb cast list. So on that note, this version of Uncle Tom's Cabin is worth a look.
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