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Sumurun (1920)

Not Rated | | Adventure, Drama, Romance | 25 September 1921 (USA)
The favorite slave girl of a tyrannical sheik falls in love with a cloth merchant. Meanwhile, a hunchback clown suffers unrequited love for a traveling dancer who wants to join the harem.

Director:

Ernst Lubitsch

Writers:

Friedrich Freksa (pantomime), Hanns Kräly (scenario) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ernst Lubitsch ... Yeggar - the Hunchback
Pola Negri ... Yannaia - a Dancer
Paul Wegener ... Der alte Scheich
Jenny Hasselqvist ... Sumurun
Aud Egede-Nissen Aud Egede-Nissen ... Haidee
Harry Liedtke ... Nur-Al Din
Carl Clewing Carl Clewing ... Der junge Scheich
Margarete Kupfer ... Alte Frau
Jakob Tiedtke ... Head Eunuch
Max Kronert Max Kronert ... Muffti, 1st Servant of Nur-al-Djin
Paul Biensfeldt Paul Biensfeldt ... Achmed, the Slave Trader
Paul Graetz ... Pufti, 2nd Servant of Nur-al-Djin
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Storyline

The favorite slave girl of a tyrannical sheik falls in love with a cloth merchant, which puts her life in terrible danger. Luckily, she is beloved of the rest of the harem, which conspires to bring the true lovers together, while distracting the prying eyes of the eunuchs who serve as palace guards. Meanwhile, a traveling dancer is eager to become part of the harem, much to the despair of the hunchback clown who is in love with her. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Pola Negri As the Wild Desert dancer (1921 One Arabian Night poster) See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

25 September 1921 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

One Arabian Night See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Kino Print)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Color:

Black and White (tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Connections

Featured in Die UFA (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Lot of Lubitsch Goes a Long Way Astray!
23 April 2008 | by JohnHowardReidSee all my reviews

Disappointing. The chief problem, as Lubitsch was quick to acknowledge, is Lubitsch. His exaggerated, hammy acting is one that Lubitsch the director would never have permitted any of his players. In fact, he was so unhappy with his over-the-top histrionics that he vowed never to act again.

Admittedly, there are a few other major faults. All the characters are one-dimensional and the story tends to drag, especially in the comedy relief sequences provided by camera-hoggers Kronert and Graetz, who are just awful. Margarete Kupfer's repulsive old hag is also over- indulged.

On the other hand, the film does provide an almost equal number of pleasures. not only in its exotic sets and cinematography, but in the alluring presence of Pola Negri, who receives excellent support from Paul Wegener who cleverly underplays his ruthless, self-indulgent sheik and thus makes him a really terrifying figure.

And for lessons in how to play comic relief with style, I nominate Jakob Tiedtke and Paul Biensfeldt, who both do amusing wonders with seemingly impossible characters. A slave trader, a comic figure? But that's how Biensfeldt plays this despicable little heap of slime-- and it works!

This film is now available on a somewhat odd Alpha Video DVD. Someone has gone to a great deal of trouble to replace the original (presumably German) inter-titles. These new English titles look very swanky indeed, but unfortunately they make the movie itself look just awful, thanks to its rather muddy and extremely well-worn print.


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