The setting is in old California when it was under the rule of Mexico. Don Hernando is a powerful feudal lord who is arrogant and cruel. Padre Ernesto is a noble priest, greatly beloved by ... See full summary »

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Don Hernando
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The setting is in old California when it was under the rule of Mexico. Don Hernando is a powerful feudal lord who is arrogant and cruel. Padre Ernesto is a noble priest, greatly beloved by his congregation. In trying to save Pepe, an Indian slave of Don Hernando's, from being punished by the latter, the Padre is struck and mistreated by the Don. He bears no resentment, however, and later, when the Don is stricken with the dread disease, smallpox, it is none other than the Padre himself and Pepe who risk their lives to nurse him back to health. But just as Don recovers, the Padre is himself stricken with the disease, to which he succumbs. Pepe is heartbroken, and from that moment swears to avenge himself for the Padre's death by taking the life of the Don. Pepe brings up the rear of the funeral procession, but instead of entering the Mission, lays in wait for the Don. Don Hernando comes and pauses. Pepe sneaks up behind him and raises high in the air the knife that is to strike the ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

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Short | Western

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21 December 1911 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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The picture as a whole will appeal as strongly to the natural feelings
12 June 2016 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

A tale of hacienda life in old California. In this picture the Melies people have produced a work of much dignity and beauty. There are scenes in it that will appeal strongly to the most fastidious and critical lover of art and the picture as a whole will appeal as strongly to the natural feelings, because of its human truth. It tells the story of an Indian slave's heart, the Mission father being brought in merely as a means to that end. In the first scene (excellently conducted and there is no scene in the picture that is poor) the slave is beaten by his master, the Don, and for a little fault; the Mission father intercedes for him. When the Don is stricken with small-pox, the slave and the priest show forth as more competent than any around them. The priest nursing the Don back to health, catches the disease and dies. The slave half-mad with grief would have killed the Don, if he hadn't also shown much grief just in time. It is a beautiful picture. - The Moving Picture World, January 6, 1912


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