Balduin, a student of Prague, leaves his roystering companions in the beer garden, when he finds he has reached the end of his resources. He is scarcely seated in a quiet corner when a ...
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For Balduin, going out to beer parties with his fellow students and fighting out disputes at the tip of the sword have lost their charms. He wants to find love; but how would he, a ... See full summary »
Elizza La Porta,
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Balduin, a student of Prague, leaves his roystering companions in the beer garden, when he finds he has reached the end of his resources. He is scarcely seated in a quiet corner when a hideous, shriveled-up old man taps him upon the shoulder and whispers vaguely of a big inheritance for Prague's finest swordsman and wildest student if he will enter into a certain agreement. Balduin rebuffs him, satirically asking his weird companion to procure him "the luckiest ticket in a lottery or a doweried wife." The old man goes off chuckling and thence onward persistently shadows Balduin, exerting a sinister influence over him, while Balduin is still disconsolate under the frowns of fortune. The Countess Margit Schwarzenberg, hunting with her cousin, to whom her father has betrothed her, meets with an accident. She is thrown over her horse's head into a river, but Balduin, who has been directed to the spot by his evil genius, plunges in and rescues her. Subsequently Balduin calls to inquire as ...Written by
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A good film, and one I'll watch a number of times. Rich (the previous commenter)is right: there is much more going on here than is clear from the title boards, and I have to wonder how much has suffered in translation. Were there more in the original? Or was a native-language audience expected to lip-read more? Or -- since the screenplay was written by the author of the novel on which this was based -- was this a currently popular story with which the audience was already very familiar? In short, very worth a look, but it probably requires more work from contemporary viewers than the original 1913 audience had to put into it.
The Alpha Video release touts the new organ score, but the music is not matched to the story progression in any way. Sure, it starts promisingly, but degenerates into a repetitive, Phillip-Glass-like monotony that reflects nothing of the action on the screen. After listening for a while, I turned off the sound and simply watched: much better!
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