Yen Sin, a humble Chinese, is washed ashore after a storm and finds himself an outsider in the deeply Christian fishing community of Urkey. Yen Sin elects to stay, despite his status as a despised 'heathen', only to reveal hypocrisy amid the self-righteous township. Written by
In a title card, the minister says it's been "over a year" since he learned that Daniel was still alive on the day his daughter was born, yet in the final scene the baby is no bigger than she was at birth. See more »
"Shadows" is another remarkable performance from the legendary Lon Chaney. In this story, he plays a Chinese immigrant Yen Sin, who appears on the scene following his rescue at sea after a violent storm.
The lovely Marguerite De La Motte is the heroine, Sympathy who is married to the brutish Daniel Gibbs (Walter Long) who was apparently lost at sea in the same storm. Along comes a new minister, Harrison Ford (no, not THAT Harrison Ford) who falls in love with the heroine. John St. Polis plays the Minister's faithful friend (or is he?) who is also in love with Miss Sympathy. Mixed in with all of this melodrama are the Minister's efforts to convert the Chaney character.
Chaney's makeup, as always, is astounding. He basically becomes his character and makes you believe that he IS Yen Sin. You just can't help but feel a little sorry for him. He minds his own business despite all of the pressures around him until the final reel when he reveals an unexpected turn of events.
I wish that more of Chaney's movies were available. He was and is one of the true greats of the silent screen.
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