UCLA Festival of Preservation
dir. F. Harmon Weight, US, 1928, 35mm, b/w & tinted, silent, 65 min.
Live musical accompaniment by Andrew Marsh and Kate Porter
“Its very title reeks of strange people,
mystery, suspense!” reads the advance publicity for this silent melodrama,
loosely inspired by The Taming of the Shrew and directed by F. Harmon Weight.
Secretary Norma Forbes (Jacqueline Logan) accepts the marriage proposal of
Michael Bream (Clive Brook), a wealthy diamond miner. Norma reveals to her boss
and actual love interest (Walter McGrail) that she’s only marrying for the money. Having eavesdropped through a
conveniently open door, Michael, despite his genuine affections, schemes to
teach his gold-digging fiancée a lesson. From New York, the newlyweds sail
second class to South Africa, where Michael leads his wife to believe that he
is down-and-out. They settle in a bleak shack near a mine, where Norma
discovers the hardships of life in the African jungle. She sends a cable to her
former employer, divulging her whereabouts. A fight ensues, which leaves
Michael bound up and prey to a lion. At last realizing her affection for her
husband, Mrs. Bream returns with a shotgun – setting up a suspenseful climax
that can only result in no lady or no lion.
35mm preservation print courtesy of the UCLA Film & Television Archive
Preservation funding provided by Sony Pictures Entertainment
This film was preserved through a partnership of the New Zealand Film Archive, the American archival community, and the National Film Preservation Foundation, as part of a project supported by Save America’s Treasures, a partnership between the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Park Service, Department of the Interior.