MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,946 this week

The Penalty (1920)

Passed  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  August 1920 (USA)
7.6
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.6/10 from 1,304 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 35 critic

A deformed criminal mastermind plans to loot the city of San Francisco as well as revenge himself on the doctor who mistakenly amputated his legs.

Director:

Writers:

(by), (adapted from his famous novel), 2 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

WATCH NOW
ON DISC

Related News

A 'Hollywood Hero' Remembered
| Alt Film Guide
The Penalty (1920) | Blu-ray Review
| ioncinema
Blu-ray Release: The Penalty
| Disc Dish

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 31 Oct 2010
 
a list of 388 titles
created 10 Mar 2012
 
a list of 296 titles
created 30 Mar 2012
 
a list of 345 titles
created 09 Nov 2012
 
a list of 41 titles
created 11 Feb 2014
 

Related Items

Search for "The Penalty" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Penalty (1920)

The Penalty (1920) on IMDb 7.6/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Penalty.

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Dr. Henry Jekyll experiments with scientific means of revealing the hidden, dark side of man and releases a murderer from within himself.

Director: John S. Robertson
Stars: John Barrymore, Martha Mansfield, Brandon Hurst
The Unknown (1927)
Drama | Horror | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A criminal on the run hides in a circus and seeks to possess the daughter of the ringmaster at any cost.

Director: Tod Browning
Stars: Lon Chaney, Norman Kerry, Joan Crawford
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In fifteenth century Paris, the brother of the archdeacon plots with the gypsy king to foment a peasant revolt. Meanwhile, a freakish hunchback falls in love with the gypsy queen.

Director: Wallace Worsley
Stars: Lon Chaney, Patsy Ruth Miller, Norman Kerry
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Robert and Beth Gordon are married but share little. He runs into Sally at a cabaret and the Gordons are soon divorced. Just as he gets bored with Sally's superficiality, Beth strives to ... See full summary »

Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Stars: Gloria Swanson, Thomas Meighan, Bebe Daniels
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A gruff Marine sergeant and a handsome new recruit compete for the affection of a nurse.

Director: George W. Hill
Stars: Lon Chaney, William Haines, Eleanor Boardman
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A professional clown and a self-indulgent count learn to help each other with their problems, but then become romantic rivals.

Director: Herbert Brenon
Stars: Lon Chaney, Bernard Siegel, Loretta Young
Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

As Alice and Cora Munro attempt to find their father, a British officer in the French and Indian War, they are set upon by French soldiers and their cohorts, Huron tribesmen led by the evil... See full summary »

Directors: Clarence Brown, Maurice Tourneur
Stars: Wallace Beery, Barbara Bedford, Alan Roscoe
Certificate: Passed Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In this early collaboration with director Tod Browning (Dracula, Freaks), Chaney delivers a dual performance of dramatic intensity, starring as Ah Wing, a kind-hearted student of Confucian ... See full summary »

Director: Tod Browning
Stars: Priscilla Dean, Wheeler Oakman, Lon Chaney
Drama | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A bitter clown endeavors to rescue the young woman he loves from the lecherous count who once betrayed him.

Director: Victor Sjöström
Stars: Lon Chaney, Norma Shearer, John Gilbert
The Saphead (1920)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The simple-minded son of a rich financier must find his own way in the world.

Directors: Herbert Blaché, Winchell Smith
Stars: Edward Jobson, Beulah Booker, Edward Connelly
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

After breaking a mirror in his home, superstitious Max tries to avoid situations which could bring bad luck-- but in doing so, causes himself the worst luck imaginable.

Director: Max Linder
Stars: Max Linder, Alta Allen, Ralph McCullough
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A gang of crooks evade the police by moving their operations to a small town. There the gang's leader encounters a faith healer and uses him to scam gullible public of funds for a supposed ... See full summary »

Director: George Loane Tucker
Stars: Lon Chaney, Betty Compson, Joseph J. Dowling
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles Clary ...
Doris Pawn ...
Jim Mason ...
Frisco Pete (as James Mason)
...
Milton Ross ...
...
Kenneth Harlan ...
...
Edit

Storyline

Blizzard, deranged from a childhood operation in which both his legs were perhaps needlessly amputated after an accident, becomes a vicious criminal, and eventually mob leader of the San Francisco underworld. Out for revenge against the surgeon who performed his operation, he undergoes brain surgery which has a chance of altering his anti-social behavior. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Blizzard, master of San Francisco's underworld, legless, deformed--the weirdest character ever presented on the screen--you'll never forget him. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Passed
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

August 1920 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bűntetés  »

Box Office

Budget:

$88,868 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(2004 alternate)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A shot of Lon Chaney walking down stairs was put onto the end to prove the audience that he was not an amputee. It was removed from the 1926 release and the film footage is now lost. See more »

Quotes

Blizzard: As you can see, you haven't been allowed to do too much damage.
Rose: I think I'm glad.
Blizzard: Why?
Rose: Don't you see?
[they embrace]
Rose: Master!
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is no cast list, but the 8 main actors and their character names are credited in the inter-titles as each appear in the film. See more »

Connections

Featured in Kingdom of Shadows (1998) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Lon is THE KING
28 March 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

If anyone has any doubts as to who is the greatest actor of all times, CHECK OUT THIS FLICK!!! No CG here to make legs disappear. Just One mans creativity and iron will. There is nobody in Hollywood (or anywhere else for that matter) who has the kind of mettle this guy had. Those who believe Lon only did Phantom and Hunchback type fare really need to see this. I have been a fan of Lon's work since seeing The Phantom at an early age. His makeup job nearly scarred me for life. My father had to explain to me that it was only makeup, show me a picture of what he really looked like (a picture of a middle aged, jowly, smiling man,) and tell me the tale of "the Man of a Thousand Faces." This hooked me. Lon delivers in this role. His animated face goes through all gears with liquid rapidity. The new "industrial" flavored soundtrack definitely adds something, too. Kudos to Kino for that. If you like Lon Chaney, you will love this movie. If you have never seen any of his work, this is a great place to start.


16 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The music score was DREADFUL scottishvalkyrie
I don't get the whole thing with the hats? westsalemcongress
i really liked this movie but.. FrankElliottMoore
just see it bettydaw1970
Lon Chaney's Performance on this film. det2500
Chaney and the Leg Harness mnowl
Discuss The Penalty (1920) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page