Julio Madariaga is the Argentine patriarch of a wealthy family. He has two daughters, the elder wed to a Frenchman and the other to a German. He prefers the Frenchman and his family, especially his grandson Julio, causing jealousy from the German and his three sons. When Madariaga dies, the family splits up, each son-in-law returning to his own country. The Frenchman and his own move to Paris, where Julio becomes an artist and has an affair with an unhappily married woman, the lovely Marguerite Laurier. Her husband finds out, but before he can finalize a divorce, World War One rears its head and both sides of the family will endure great suffering in the conflict, especially since they must fight one another on the battlefield.Written by
Rudolph Valentino signed onto the film for $350 a week, less than Wallace Beery earned for his small role as a German officer. Metro provided Valentino only with his Argentine gaucho costume and his French soldier's uniform. For the Parisian sequence Valentino purchased more than 25 custom-fitted suits from a New York tailor, which he spent the next year paying for. See more »
The same shot of a cat clawing at a small poodle while sitting on top of a piano is used two different times. See more »
In a world old in hatred and bloodshed, where nation is crowded against nation and creed against creed, centuries of wars have sown their bitter seed, and the fires of resentment smouldering beneath the crust of civilization but await the breaking of the Seven Seals of Prophecy to start a mighty conflagration.
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Oh Jeez! I am never moved to tears by a film--but this one got to me! I think the stories within a story transcend time, and the appeal of Valentino does so too. You can't keep your eyes off him. Magnetic! Alice Terry seems a believable character in her role, and projects her personality very admirably--quite a likable one.
Speaking of Rudolph's tango It was not a tango as we know the form today, but so what--he is a smooth, strong dancer, evocative of torrid emotions--while the girl he danced with was nutty and ridiculous looking . Look at her movements, egad!--(maybe his steps were too long for her, she was short) I just had to laugh. She danced with her backside protruding and poised like a target! She is a "fight-mare" by today's standards. Her make up and hair are scary! And take those lips away!! But, observing this tango, remains one of the film's very enjoyable moments.
There isn't a person alive who could not find great interest in this superb, timeless classic of the silents. I liked the metaphysical innuendos of the fellow living above Valentino in France--Was he supposed to be an incarnation of "John of Revelation" in the Bible? I believe so.
I enjoyed the film so much, I had to give it a 10.
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