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The Sheik (1921)

A charming Arabian sheik becomes infatuated with an adventurous, modern-thinking Englishwoman and abducts her to his home in the Saharan desert.

Director:

George Melford

Writers:

Edith Maude Hull (from the novel by) (as Edith M. Hull), Monte M. Katterjohn (adaptation)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Rudolph Valentino ... The Sheik - Ahmed Ben Hassan
Agnes Ayres ... Lady Diana Mayo
Ruth Miller Ruth Miller ... Zilah - A Marriage Market Prospect
George Waggner George Waggner ... Yousaef - Tribal Chieftain (as George Waggener)
Frank Butler Frank Butler ... Sir Aubrey Mayo
Charles Brinley ... Mustapha Ali - Diana's Guide (as Charles Brindley)
Lucien Littlefield ... Gaston - French Valet
Adolphe Menjou ... Dr. Raoul de St. Hubert
Walter Long ... Omair - the Bandit
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Storyline

Sheik Ahmed (Valentino) desperately desires fiesty British socialite Diana (Ayres), so he abducts her and carries her off to his luxurious desert tent-palace. The free-spirited Diana recoils from his passionate embraces and yearns to be released. Only after being kidnapped by desert bandits does Diana realize how much she has grown to love Ahmed, who comes to her rescue in the nick of time. Written by E. Beck

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A flaming romance of desert love! Flinging away the trappings of civilization! Leaving the "lady" only a woman, the "gentleman" only a man. (Print Ad-The Milwaukee Sentinel,((Milwaukee, Wisc.)) 30 November 1921) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 November 1921 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

O Sheik See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Was partial inspiration for the naming of Hollywood High School's sports teams as "The Sheiks", a name which persists to this day (2017). See more »

Quotes

Ahmed: When an Arab sees a woman that he wants, he takes her.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Indie Sex: Censored (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
super-important historically--awfully silly to some if seen today
28 April 2006 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This movie is definitely a curio from the past. It was Rudolph Valentino's most famous movie and helped to make him, for a time, the most desired man across the globe. He was, in fact, the first true "male sex symbol" as a result of his performance in this movie. So, historically, it's a very important film. However, many seeing the film today will marvel at how poorly the film translates to modern audiences and sensibilities. First, the acting is overly dramatic--even for most silent films. Second, the sexy star might be seen by many today as a rapist--considering he kidnaps the lady and ultimately forces himself on her. But, despite this, it's still an entertaining if slight piece. I doubt, considering the sex symbols of the 21st century, Valentino will turn any of you on, but it still is interesting to see who grandma and great-grandma were panting over almost a century ago!

NOTE: Since I first posted this review, I have seen quite a few more films starring Valentino. And, overall, I think THE SHEIK is among his poorest films--though his most notable. Tastes do indeed change, as today it isn't all that great. Try seeing some of his other work--it definitely is an improvement in most cases.


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