Billy Martin is sent to New York to put through a war contract for his father, a new England manufacturer, and takes $100,000 as a security. The munition broker's secretary, a crook, tells ... See full summary »





Cast overview:
Billy Martin
Mr. Martin
Alice Gale ...
The Mother
Billy's Wife
William Black ...
Graham (as W.W. Black)
John Mackin ...
Frank Goldsmith ...


Billy Martin is sent to New York to put through a war contract for his father, a new England manufacturer, and takes $100,000 as a security. The munition broker's secretary, a crook, tells Graham, a gambling house keeper, of Billy's coming. Miller is detailed to lure him to the gambling house. Miller, posing as the broker's representative, meets Billy and offers to show him New York life. He meets Zena and is so captivated that he consents to try his luck at the roulette wheel. After his first success he loses rapidly. At last Zena drags him away with only $15,000 left. Zena repentant, tries to comfort Billy. She finds he is determined to win back his losses and is captivated by his pluck. Reluctantly she takes him to the gambling house. Billy loses all. When the mail brings no word from Billy, his wife comes to New York. She enters his room just after he and Zena arrive. Zena hides in a closet. Billy refuses to return with his wife until he has recovered his father's money. Zeena ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

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Release Date:

5 February 1917 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Her costumes are the most striking feature of the picture
7 February 2015 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

Solomon in all his glory could never have exhibited such bizarre sartorial effects as are displayed by Valeska Suratt in "The New York Peacock," a five-reel screen drama written by Mary Murillo and produced by the Fox Film Company. In fact her costumes are the most striking feature of the picture, and are decorated with spiders, tigers, swans and gargoyles. She changes these costumes with great frequency, and even permits the spectator to inspect lacy articles of apparel which shall be nameless, and allows him to behold the wonders of her marble bath and the expanse of her well-formed back. All of which accords with the popular notion of sirens. "The New York Peacock" has taken valuable suggestions from "Camille," "The Easiest Way" and other works of art dedicated to the doings of fair but frail ladies that make the mistake of permitting their hearts to interfere with their business affairs. Like Dumas' heroine, Zena, the vampire, played by Miss Suratt, at the height of her varied career meets a man that inspires her with a pure unselfish love. At least Zena claims that her love is pure and unselfish, and then proves that it isn't by refusing to make the one sacrifice which redeems Camille. The object of Zena's fancy has a wife and child, and Zena refuses to secure his happiness in the only way possible by sending him back to his family. The young fellow's father arrives on the scene and traps the siren after she has expressed her determination to capture a man with money and gain possession of the large sum which she tempted her dupe to lose at the gambling table. The young man returns home with his father and makes way for the closing scene, which is a clarion call in the cause of truth. The siren, after falling on the floor and dissolving into tears as she clasps a photograph of the lost one to her breast, springs up at the entrance of an old admirer, throws the photograph and her grief over her left shoulder and suggests it's about time she had her supper. Valeska Suratt does full justice to the playwright's ideal. She looks and acts the character as it is understood in stage fiction, and introduces several tricks of her own invention. Her serpentine walk is a great aid in showing off her wardrobe. The production is lavish and in keeping with the subject. The directing by Kenean Buel and the acting by the supporting company, comprised of Harry Hilliard, Eric Mayne, Alice Gale, Claire Whitney, W. W. Black, John Mackin and Frank Goldsmith, are exceedingly well done. There will be no halfway measures about "The New York Peacock's" success. Those who care for this sort of thing will like it very much, but when the good housewife of the smaller cities beholds the picture it is going to make it harder work for Hiram to get away when he suggests a trip alone to the Island of Manhattan. – The Moving Picture World, February 24, 1917

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