Youth ( Richard Barthelmess ) leaves his mother ( Kate Bruce ) at the behest of Ambition ( E.J. Ratcliffe ) and with Love ( Marjorie Daw ) and Hope ( Betty Carpenter ) goes to the city, where he encounters Pleasure and asks Opportunity to wait; but she refuses and leaves him. At the Primrose Path (a cabaret), Pleasure ( Lilyan Tashman ) introduces him to Beauty, Wealth, Fashion, and Temptation ( Nita Naldi ). Youth's mother dies, and Love sends him a telegram, which is intercepted by Temptation; and when Love comes to the city, she is turned away from the Primrose Path. Chance ( Joseph W. Smiley ) directs Youth to a gambling house where he loses everything but the ring given him by Love, and he is haunted by Poverty ( Barney Furey ) and Delusion ( Reginald Denny ). With the exception of Temptation, all have forgotten him. He meets Vice and Habit and finally consents to go with Crime ( Louis Wolheim ) to rob Wealth's house. On the way he hears a church choir singing and decides to go home; with Experience ( John Miltern ) he returns where Love and Hope await him. Ambition again seeks Youth, who with Love at his side starts a new life.
This 1921 allegorical film was based on George V. Hobart's successful 1914 Broadway play of the same name. The film version was produced by the Famous Players-Lasky Corporation and starring Richard Barthelmess, sadly it now remains a lost silent film.
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