This 1913 silent was meant to be an anti-absinthe propaganda film. Glen White plays a French artist battling an addiction with the potent green aniseed-flavoured liqueur.
The story begins with a tender moment between the French artist ( Glen White ) and the studios beautiful model, Miss Weston ( Sadie Weston ), who are interrupted by fellow studio artists. After some good-natured teasing from the fellows, they all go to the local out-door cafe for a drink, Miss Weston happens along and is a little startled seeing the artist drinking, however, they soon become engaged. Miss Weston begins to worry his addiction is stronger than his love for her and returns the engagement ring. Depressed, he returns home and soon gazes into a goblet of the demon alcohol, and begins to have a dream. First he re-lives being shunned by Miss Weston, next he is fired from the art studio, unable to afford another drink he goes home asking for money and is thrown out, next his fellow artist friends will have nothing to do with him and he becomes irate. He now lays in wait and chokes one of his friends, meanwhile, Miss Weston is praying for his salvation. He awakens from the dream stronger and pours the goblet on the floor just as Miss Weston walks in. They embrace and together take the demon bottle and throw it into the flowing river.
The message is delivered in one reel, that is finely portrayed by the entire cast. The cinematography is impressive for a 1913 film, well preserved and a must watch for fans of early silent cinema. This 1913 version should not be confused with the lost 1914 four reel King Baggot film of the same name. A longer and different plot line is found from surviving synopsis, you may check my review for the 1914 film.
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