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Witness a Train Wreck

Author: wes-connors from Los Angeles
4 January 2011

Subtitled "A Story of Modern Life in Five Thrilling Parts" this was a considered a spectacular production for the time, and Vitagraph released it as "A Blue Ribbon Feature". "The Juggernaut" starred the studio's immensely popular leading players Earle Williams and Anita Stewart. Both were mainstays in the "Top Ten" movie star rankings published by "Motion Picture Magazine" and "Quigley Publications", throughout the 'teens.

"The Juggernaut" synopsis is readily available (but, sometimes inaccurately), and the climactic fifth reel of the film survives in good condition. At the time of this writing, the exciting last reel can be searched, and run easily, online; so, you can see if Williams is able to rescue Stewart. This fifth was the part of the drama worth preserving. Other than the train wreck, it's rather typical; witness how well Stewart dries up for close-ups.

"The Juggernaut" was voted favorite film #12, Williams performance placed #23, and Stewart's lead was #42 in an "all-time" greatest poll tallied by "Motion Picture Magazine" through 1916. In the May 1915 issue, columnist Tarleton Winchester observed, "When the flying express train hurtled thru the air, crashing from the tottering bridge to the lake below, the audience at the Vitagraph Theater trembled with the excitement of the scene."

***** The Juggernaut (3/7/15) Ralph Ince ~ Anita Stewart, Earle Williams, Frank Currier, William R. Dunn

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