Clara Angelo does not really love her husband, David, a distinguished Roman banker, who is old, ugly and bent. Unknown to her husband, her mother, Mrs. Brunschaut, has involved her in a ... See full summary »


(as H.W. Bergman), (novel)


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Cast overview:
E.H. Sothern ...
Charlotte Ives ...
Clara Angelo
Gilda Varesi Archibald ...
Mme. Brunschaut (as Vilda Varesi)
Mr. Roberts ...
Baron Rocco
Brinsley Shaw ...
Pietro Stroggi
Bernard Siegel ...
Signor Casa (as Mr. Siegel)


Clara Angelo does not really love her husband, David, a distinguished Roman banker, who is old, ugly and bent. Unknown to her husband, her mother, Mrs. Brunschaut, has involved her in a foreign conspiracy, in order that she may add to the extravagance of her living. David Angelo becomes aware of the intrigue, but before he can discover just what it is, he is called to Naples on business. He leaves his fortune in care of his partner, Stroggi, to be given to Mrs. Angelo in case anything happens to him. On his trip back home he stops to see Vesuvius, and is caught by a sudden eruption and smothered under the hot ashes. He is, however, rescued, and under the treatment of a great scientist, is restored to health; his physical disabilities have also been removed, and he is straight and rejuvenated in appearance, so much so that the doctor tells him he would not be believed if he declared himself to be David Angelo, and he decides to let the world believe that he is dead. He returns to Rome ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

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based on novel | See All (1) »






Release Date:

8 January 1917 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Situations so far removed from matter-of-fact existence
3 November 2014 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

A five-reel screen version of the novel by A.C. Gunter, "The Man of Mystery," produced by the Vitagraph, gives E.H. Sothern an excellent opportunity to appear in a part which admits of the class of acting to which his past training best suits him. Written in a vein of fervid romance, the story is prolific of the flourishes, full stops and sweeping gestures that go with situations so far removed from matter-of-fact existence. As a subject for screen drama the novel has two faults: lack of suspense and too deliberate movement. Prom the moment that David Angelo makes known his purpose to gain his wife's love while disguised as Count Vesuvius, the issue is never in doubt; and the motives used in constructing the story, though always interesting, fail to give the cue for the requisite action which insures life and vigor to drama, whether shown on the stage or the screen. The production, under the direction of Fred Thomson, has excellent local color and exhibits a number of picturesque exteriors and correctly staged interior settings. The atmosphere throughout the entire drama is impressive, and the acting of the cast is equally commendable. Mr. Sothern as David Angelo does a clever bit of character acting in the early part of the drama, impersonating a middle-aged cripple, deformed by disease who is restored in marvelous fashion during an eruption of Vesuvius. He makes a distinguished figure as the Count in the latter portion of "The Man of Mystery'' and endows the part with the grace and fine breeding necessary to win almost any woman. Charlotte Ives makes the wife a worthy object for the devotion of such a man as David Angelo, and Vilda Varesi, Mr. Roberto, Brinsley Shaw and Mr. Seigel play their respective roles with convincing skill. One of the best points in the play occurs at the finish. David and his wife are deep in the enjoyment of their new happiness when the lady remarks: "I have a letter from mother and she wants you to use your influence to get her out of prison," and David, out of the wisdom derived from his past experience with his mother-in-law, makes answer, "Let well enough alone." "Daniel come to judgment!" – The Moving Picture World, January 13, 1917

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