5.9/10
45
3 user 1 critic

The Idol Dancer (1920)

This D.W Griffith silent classic features a new music score by writer composer, Jim Roberge.

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Mary
...
Walter Kincaid
...
Rev. Franklyn Blythe
Kate Bruce ...
Mrs. Blythe
Porter Strong ...
Rev. Peter
Anders Randolf ...
The Blackbirder
Walter James ...
Chief Wando
Thomas Carr ...
Donald Blythe
Herbert Sutch ...
Old Thomas
Adolph Lestina ...
Black Slave
Ben Grauer ...
Native Boy
Walter Kolomoku ...
Native Musician
Florence Short ...
Pansy
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Storyline

A religious zealot and his nephew are thrown together on a South Seas Island with an alcoholic beach comber and a native dancer. A battle to see who will "civilize" whom ensues. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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21 March 1920 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fires of Love  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

During the making of both this film and The Love Flower (1920), filmed simultaneously in December 1919, D.W. Griffith and his cast and crew experienced rough seas while sailing on the yacht The Grey Duck from Miami to Nassau. Two persons were washed overboard and were rescued, but there was no food for three days. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Deservedly Forgotten
3 September 2005 | by See all my reviews

"The Idol Dancer" is one of D.W. Griffith's two South Seas dramas made in Florida; "The Love Flower" is the other. It's a low point in his career--before his resurgence with "Way Down East". The story involves missionaries trying to make natives wear pants. Richard Barthelmess, as an alcoholic beachcomber, and Clarine Seymour, as the idol dancer, are briefly amusing, but the boring missionaries and the film's questionable morals soon ruin that.

Griffith's direction is prosaic and slipshod. The climax is derivative of "The Birth of a Nation", and like that film "The Idol Dancer" is racist, too, but has nothing to make itself worthwhile despite it. This one deserves its place as one of Griffith's lesser and ignored, or forgotten, pictures.


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