During the Russian Revolution, a mentally challenged peasant saves then obsesses over a beautiful countess.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Captain Dimitri
...
Countess Tatiana Alexandrova
...
Vladimir Gaidaroff
Emily Fitzroy ...
Mrs. Gaidaroff
Charles Puffy ...
Ivan - the Gatekeeper
Kai Schmidt ...
Butler
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Storyline

There is hunger in Siberia during the Russian Civil War. Dim-witted peasant Sergei is searching corpses for food. He meets a mysterious young woman looking for the town of Novokursk. She asks Sergei to tell anyone they might meet that he is her husband. They find an abandoned house where they can rest... but a stranger is hiding inside. Sergei washes the woman's feet and prepares a bed for her. The stranger reveals himself and is soon joined by cossacks; they do not believe that the woman is a peasant's wife. They beat Sergei but he does not betray her. The two are rescued by White cavalry. The woman is in fact the Countess Alexandrova. In Novokursk, the countess stays with the rich Gaidaroff family. When Sergei leaves hospital, he goes to see his "friend". The countess begrudgingly provides a job in the household. Sergei is exposed to the revolutionary talk of Ivan, a servant. When the Whites leave town to counter an attack, the Reds are free to act... Written by David Steele

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"It is fate"

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 August 1927 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Terror  »

Box Office

Budget:

$187,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Ivan - the Gatekeeper: Don't you understand? It's time for us to be masters now!
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Connections

Referenced in Man of a Thousand Faces (1957) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Should Be Better Known
30 May 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This little known title still manages to draw audiences thanks to Lon Chaney, although it is a bit hard to find. However, when found, it is a crowd pleaser thanks to a decent story, great acting, and nice production elements.

Chaney stars as Sergei, an unintelligent peasant who happens upon a woman (Barbara Bedford) while lurking in the forest in search of food. She requests that he accompany her to the city and to comply with whatever she says. His agreement of these terms becomes useful when revolutionists try to attack her. Sergei's actions in the situation make it possible for the two of them to reach the city, where he discovers that the woman is Countess Tatiana. In gratitude, she offers Sergei a job in the kitchen where she is staying under the direction of burly Ivan (Charles Puffy). He agrees and grows more and more fond of Tatiana and jealous of her relationship with soldier Dimitri (Ricardo Cortez) until he is driven to action by revolutionist Ivan.

As always, Chaney gives a stirring performance through a transforming makeup job. His character is rude and dirty, but we somehow sympathize with him even though we are brought to like both sides of the spectrum. Sometimes Lon is supposed to be sweet but sometimes he is supposed to be evil, but his character is realistic enough to be forgiven. Bedford is stunning as his love interest, first appearing dressed down in a Madonna-like fashion and then cleaning up to look Garbo-esquire.

The mechanics of the film are great too. It opens with an extreme close-up on Chaney's hungry hands searching through a dead soldier's effects. It follows him as he roams around. Lighting is used to highlight the scenes, especially toward the end of the film when lights flicker on and off constantly. These provide an added touch to make the film even better than it already would have been.


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