Up 48,303 this week

The Secret Game (1917)

 -  Drama  -  3 December 1917 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.4/10 from 63 users  
Reviews: 7 user

During the Great War, German and Japanese spies face off in the United States.


(scenario), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: March

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in March.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 13 titles
created 22 Jan 2013
list image
a list of 2314 titles
created 23 Apr 2013
list image
a list of 24 titles
created 01 Oct 2013
list image
a list of 9883 titles
created 29 Oct 2013

Related Items

Search for "The Secret Game" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Secret Game (1917)

The Secret Game (1917) on IMDb 6.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Secret Game.





Cast overview:
Maj. John Northfield
Kitty Little
Mayme Kelso ...
Miss Loring
Raymond Hatton ...
Mrs. Harris
Charles Ogle ...
Dr. Ebell Smith


Dr. Ebell Smith, whose real name is Schmidt, is a German secret agent working on the west coast of the USA. One of his associates is Kitty Little, a young woman who idealizes both Germany and her brother, who is in the Kaiser's army. They have been obtaining American military secrets through their contact with Major Northfield, who is in charge of a quartermaster depot. Nara-Nara, a young man serving in the secret service of Japan, which is allied with the USA, knows that there is a security leak in Northfield's office. An important troop transport order is soon to come through, and Smith abducts Northfield's secretary so that Kitty can take her place. Meanwhile, Nara-Nara sets up an office as an importer next to Northfield's office, in hopes of learning how the Germans are obtaining their information. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

3 December 1917 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Featured in The Slanted Screen (2006) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Too Little Known Silent Gem That Freezes History

Imagine a Japanese diplomat solemnly intoning to his young secret agent that their country's honor depended on being able to protect American warships and troop ships as they traversed the Pacific. Not exactly what most of conjure up when we remember relations in that part of the world between our countries.

But in 1917 Japan and the U.S. were on the same side, fighting the Central Powers. In "The Secret Game" the U.S. is planning a master stroke attack against Germany and Austria-Hungary through Russia and our ships will cross the Pacific to Vladivostok. No such plan was ever envisaged but its the center of the plot here.

Young Sessue Hayakawa, born to a military family in Japan, is Nara-Nara, the secret agent. How anyone came up with that idiotic name is lost to history. Hayakawa, masquerading as a curios dealer in, essentially, cheap trinkets, is out to uncover a German spy ring.

An evil man runs the spy operation but his chief agent is lovely Kitty Little, played by the very busy and beautiful silent film actress Florence Vidor (she didn't make it to success in the talkies). Kitty is to seduce, Platonically of course, MAJ John Northfield, acted by Jack Holt. Surprise: they actually fall in love.

How can so lovely a woman be in the service of our evil foes? Don't worry-she sees the light and comes to her comely senses.

Hayakawa is effective as a man with strong morals and deep conviction whose usually impeccable behavior lapses through an all-too-common human failing. He redeems himself melodramatically.

Particularly interesting is that a black character is portrayed without any racial denigration and Hayakawa himself is emblematically Japanese without any crude stereotyping. Hayakawa, by the way, devoted much time during World War I to raising money for bonds in the U.S. He had a long career. Ironically his most remembered role for which he was Oscar-nominated was as the Japanese World War II prisoner-of-war camp commander in "The Bridge Over the River Kwai."

This is a small gem from the glory days of the silents. Very worth seeing.


8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Secret Game (1917) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: