Prisoner of Zenda

The Prisoner of Zenda

Director: Rex Ingram

Cast: Lewis Stone, Alice Terry, Robert Edeson

     
 

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This epic-scale silent adaptation of the popular novel by Anthony Hope concerns Rudolph (Lewis S. Stone), a member of the royal family of Ruritania who is about to be crowned King. However, his conniving and ill-tempered brother has designs on the throne, and he drugs his sibling shortly before his coronation. Rudolph's allies find a British tourist who bears a

Overview

This epic-scale silent adaptation of the popular novel by Anthony Hope concerns Rudolph (Lewis S. Stone), a member of the royal family of Ruritania who is about to be crowned King. However, his conniving and ill-tempered brother has designs on the throne, and he drugs his sibling shortly before his coronation. Rudolph's allies find a British tourist who bears a striking resemblance to the would-be king, Rudolph Rassendyll (also played by Stone). They persuade the visitor to pose as Rudolph during the coronation to prevent the brother from usurping the crown. When the brother's henchmen discover that the Englishman is posing as Rudolph, they lock the real monarch away in a dungeon and attempt to expose the false king before he can be given the crown. The Prisoner of Zenda was directed by Rex Ingram, one of the most important directors of the American silent cinema, and co-starred Alice Terry as Princess Flavia and Robert Edeson as Colonel Sapt. The story was previously filmed in 1915, and would enjoy three more remakes during the sound era.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Richard Gilliam
The Prisoner of Zenda is remembered for its rich, lush production values, and the efficient work of director Rex Ingram. Among the silent era's most handsome motion pictures, this was the third and best filming of Anthony Hope's popular novel within a ten year period. Ramon Novarro, playing the villainous Count Rupert, gets top billing over the dual-role hero Lewis Stone and leading lady Alice Terry. All give strong performances, particularly Terry, who was married at the time to Ingram. The film's major flaw is a lack of visual style. Nonetheless, the strength of the story and quality of production more than carry the film. Despite several popular, big box-office sound-era versions of The Prisoner of Zenda, Hope's sequel novel, Rupert of Hentzau, has been filmed only twice, most recently as the follow-up to this 1922 effort. Both sequels were considerably less successful than the original efforts.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/21/2010
UPC:
0883316276631
Original Release:
1922
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Archives
Presentation:
[B&W, Full Frame]
Time:
1:30:00
Sales rank:
7,238

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