A young man of society wants to make an expedition to Africa, but his fiancée asks him for help about one of her fathers guests shortly before his planed departure. Her suspects about that ... See full summary »
Mary Dugan, a Broadway showgirl, is charged with murder in the knifing death of her wealthy lover, and goes on trial for her life. When her defense counsel appears to bungle his job, Mary's... See full summary »
A theatrical troupe from the west end of London loses its leading lady (Rose Trelawny) when she goes off to marry a rich young man from the other side of town (Arthur Gower). The rest of ... See full summary »
Four heirs to a family fortune are summoned to appear at the family estate for the reading of the will, where they meet the estate's staff, which includes a nurse, a crazed doctor and a sinister handyman.
A young woman who owns a coffee shop falls for a handsome young customer, unaware that he is a gangster. The association results in her being tried and sentenced to a long prison term. ... See full summary »
The Devil's Circus is a beautiful meditation on the vanity and futility of human existence. Its plot is involved and at times borders on the maudlin, but it was made at a time when sentiments such as love and passion could be depicted without the irony and distance that are so necessary for 'serious' movies today. It depicts an individual who loses everything but finds his heart. Many of the scenes are disturbing in their artistic intensity. I was particularly taken by the circus scenes, which remind me of the painting Ensor, a famous Belgian artist whose work predates the movie only by a few years. The movie struck me more as having the aura of nineteenth-century Romanticism, giving it an unreal, spectacular quality. A must for any fan of silent Hollywood, who will find many of the cinema's great traditions anticipated in this fine work. I believe this was MGM's first production, underlining the film's important place in movie history.
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