5.7/10
245
8 user 3 critic

The Symbol of the Unconquered (1920)

TV-PG | | Drama | 29 November 1920 (USA)
Racists learn that the land a negro owns lies over a vast oil field, and threaten his life when he refuses to sell.

Director:

Oscar Micheaux

Writer:

Oscar Micheaux
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Abandoned by her fiancé, an educated black woman with a shocking past dedicates herself to helping a near bankrupt school for impoverished black youths.

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Stars: Evelyn Preer, Flo Clements, James D. Ruffin
Body and Soul (1925)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A minister is malevolent and sinister behind his righteous facade. He consorts with, and later extorts from, the owner of a gambling house, and betrays an honest girl, eventually driving ... See full summary »

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Stars: Paul Robeson, Marshall Rogers, Lawrence Chenault
Birthright (1939)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A black Harvard graduate confronts racism.

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Stars: Carman Newsome, Ethel Moses, Alec Lovejoy
The Exile (1931)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A young man named Jean in post-World War I Chicago falls in love with a beautiful girl named Edith. He proposes to her, but realizes that she's involved in the rackets and won't leave them,... See full summary »

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Stars: Eunice Brooks, Stanley Morrell, Celeste Cole
Adventure | Crime | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A veteran World War I fighter pilot returns home a war hero and immediately regains his former job as a railroad company detective. His first case: recover a stolen satchel filled with ... See full summary »

Director: Richard E. Norman
Stars: Laurence Criner, Kathryn Boyd, Boise De Legge
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An educated, upscale young black musician marries a woman from a lower socioeconomic class to get her out of the clutches of her stepfather, who beats and abuses her. However, once he "... See full summary »

Director: Frank Peregini
Stars: Harry Henderson, Norman Johnstone, Ann Kennedy
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Two Actors try their hands at stage comedy.

Stars: Jimmy Marshall, Florence McClain, Frank Montgomery
Eleven P.M. (1928)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A surreal melodrama in which a poor violinist named Sundaisy (Maurice) tries to protect an orphan girl (Wand Maurice) from a small-time hoodlum.

Director: Richard Maurice
Stars: Richard Maurice, Sammie Fields, Orine Johnson
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

Chased from his apartment by a policeman, ne'er do-well Rastus Jones finds refuge in a Chinese laundry, where he wreaks slapstick havoc and has a memorable encounter with an improperly-filled opium pipe.

Director: C.N. David
Stars: Sam Robinson
When It Rains (1995)
Short | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A musician spends New Year's Day trying to help his friend pay the rent.

Director: Charles Burnett
Stars: Ayuko Babu, Florence Bracy, Kenny Merritt
Swing! (1938)
Musical | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Ted Gregory is trying to be the first black producer to mount a show on Broadway, but he has trouble with his star singer.

Director: Oscar Micheaux
Stars: Cora Green, Larry Seymour, Hazel Diaz
Fireworks (1949)
Short | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Depicts a dream sequence about the brutal rape and torture of Anger himself (as a teenager) by a group of sailors on the street (after trying to pick one of them up).

Director: Kenneth Anger
Stars: Kenneth Anger, Gordon Gray, Bill Seltzer
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Iris Hall Iris Hall ... Eve Mason
Walker Thompson Walker Thompson ... Hugh Van Allen
Lawrence Chenault Lawrence Chenault ... Jefferson Driscoll
Mattie Wilkes Mattie Wilkes ... Mother Driscoll
Louis Dean Louis Dean ... August Barr (as Louis Déan)
Leigh Whipper Leigh Whipper ... Tugi - an Indian Fakir
Jim Burris Jim Burris
E.G. Tatum E.G. Tatum ... Abraham
James Burrough James Burrough
George Catlin George Catlin ... Dick Mason
Edit

Storyline

Eve Mason, a very light-skinned negro, leaves Selma, Alabama for the northwest town of Oristown to occupy the land she inherited from her grandfather. There she meets kindly Hugh Van Allen, who turns out to be her neighbor, and he gives her a lift to her place outside of town. Jefferson Driscoll is another very light-skinned negro who wants to be taken as white, and he hates the negro race because his mother once interfered with his wooing a white girl. Driscoll gets in league with unsavory August Barr, an Indian fakir called Tugi, and horse thieves Bill Stanton and Philip Clark. When Driscoll intercepts a letter for Van Allen showing his land is on an oil field, the group posts notes on Van Allen's tent, threatening his life if he won't sell his land. Van Allen ignores the the notes, which are signed "The Knights of the Black Cross," leaves for town to buy furniture and won't be back for 48 hours. In his absence, the last note is posted, giving him 48 hours to sell. The group, led by... Written by Arthur Hausner <genart@volcano.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Story by a Negro. Negro Players. Negro Director. Negro Cameraman. Art Titles by Negroes. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

TV-PG
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

29 November 1920 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wilderness Trail See more »

Filming Locations:

Fort Lee, New Jersey, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Micheaux Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The only surviving print of this film is in the collection of the Cinematheque Royale in Belgium. Its title cards are in French and Flemish. They have been translated back, from French, into English. See more »

Quotes

Old Bill Stanton: We will attack at midnight. In one hour, we will have driven him mad and burned him alive in his lair.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was restored by the Museum of Modern Art Dept. of Film and Video, and Turner Classic Movies, in co-operation with the Oscar Micheaux Society. The only surviving print was in the collection of the Cinémathetique Royale in Belgium with French and Flemish intertitles. These were translated back into English by Charles Musser (© 1996 by him) and a percussion music score by Max Roach was added. Missing scenes were summarized by intertitles. The running time is 59 minutes. See more »

Connections

Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.21 (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Clash of Symbols
30 March 2017 | by richardchattenSee all my reviews

'The Symbol of the Unconquered', like most silent westerns, is an easygoing outdoor yarn making good use of attractive sylvan locations; but with the unorthodox racial element one expects from a film by Oscar Micheaux. The villainy is surprisingly not exclusively white in origin, the meanest of the bad guys being a mulatto called Driscoll whose hatred of blacks derives from his own failure to pass for white - in a flashback anticipating 'Imitation of Life' - when his black mother inconveniently shows up while he's courting a nice local white girl. The veteran black actor Leigh Whipper (best known for the role of Crooks in both the original Broadway production and film version of 'Of Mice and Men') makes his film debut rather bizarrely playing the role of a villainous Indian fakir.

After much scheming the bad guys finally make their move on the estate of hero Hugh Van Allen's oil-rich settlement with the help of the local Ku Klux Klan, who saddle up in an impressively shot night sequence, while heroine Eve Mason changes out of her frock into an equally impressive Annie Oakley buckskin cowgirl outfit to ride off herself for help.

Unfortunately, it's at this point that a substantial chunk of the film is tantalisingly missing. But the help duly arrives, since the Klan get their asses kicked and are sent packing by a fusillade of bricks thrown by a brother. When the dust settles, Hugh is now an oil millionaire with a big office, his arm round the comely Eve. The End.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 8 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Check Out What's Playing on IMDb Freedive

See what movies and TV series you can watch for free today, and visit IMDb Freedive for even more. Select any poster below to play the movie!

Find more things to watch

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed