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Supplement to "The Cinema," November, 1912.
THE CINEMA" critic attends the leading film demonstrations, and all films reviewed in this Supplement have been selected from the various programmes of releases during the ensuing month.
New Agency Film Co., Shaftesbury Av.
"THE VEILED PROPHET." Released November 17th. Length 2,520 feet.
Zelica, one of the maidens of the village, is drawing water at the well, when Azim, an Arab, declares his love to her. He receives the answer he desires, but the lovers are soon destined to be parted. The Khalifa, with his savage army, passes the village. Azim leaves his sweetheart and becomes a soldier. Two years pass, and Zelica receives no news of her sweetheart, whom she is compelled to believe has fallen in battle. A dream in which she sees Azim slain in fight makes her fears a certainty, and when the emissaries of a powerful prophet who has arisen in the desert, preaching a Holy War, reach the village, she consents to become one of the priestesses of the new faith. Clad in the robes and veil with which the emissaries of the fanatic preacher provide her, she goes with them to the camp. Here for the first time she sees the Prophet, who keeps his face always veiled, for it is said that no man can look upon his face and live. The Prophet is struck by the beauty of the new disciple, and gives orders that she shall be the chief of the priestesses, and regarded as second only to himself. The Prophet is soon completely enamoured of Zelica, and makes her Grand Priestess of the new faith. Zelica, one day while the Prophet is sleeping, raises the veil which covers his face night and day, and discovers the real reason of his secrecy, for she sees that the features which all regard as sacred are in reality distorted and ugly. This knowledge she keeps to herself, for use when circumstances make it valuable. Azim has not fallen in battle as Zelica fears, but has played a leading part in the numerous victories of the Khalifa, and returns to his native village covered with glory. Here he finds that Zelica has left her home. Her mother informs him of the step she has taken, and Azim, determined to recover his sweetheart, offers his services in turn to the veiled Prophet. Zelica, crouched behind a curtain, recognises her lover as he makes his obeisance to the Prophet. The Prophet determines to test Azim's sincerity by subjecting him to temptation, and he is confined in a room in which most beautiful girls dance before him and attempt to induce him to share their pleasures ; but Azim is proof against their allurements, and the Prophet is satisfied that he has secured a valuable recruit. At last Azim's search for his sweetheart is rewarded with success — he meets her in the garden of the Prophet's house. The greeting between the lovers is a passionate one, and the Prophet, an unseen witness, is infuriated. Revealing himself, he reminds Zelica of her vow and turns Azim away, telling him he is unfit for service under the Sacred Banner. Azim makes his way to the Khalifa, and easily persuades the chief to make war on the Prophet. The Khalifa's army attacks the Prophet and his followers, who axe entrenched in a strong fort. At last the gate is battered down and the soldiers swarm into the fort. The Prophet takes his place on his throne to await the entry nf his conqueror. When thev would seize him he waves them
aside, and threatens by removing his veil to blind all who would touch him. The superstitious warriors shrink away, but Zelica, leaping to the steps of the throne, tears the veil aside and reveals the hideous features of the Prophet, whom all now see to be an impostor. But she nearly pays for her daring with her life. The Prophet plunges his dagger in her side, and Azim for a time fears he has found his sweetheart only to lose her. Happily, the injury is not fatal, and Azim and Zelica become husband and wife.
American Film Manufacturing Co. ior, Wardiu'r Street, W.
"THE VENGEANCE THAT FAILED."— Released November 6th. Length 978 feet.
The ranger's sweetheart has ridden her horse to a hill-top in order to intercept her lover on his return from a round of inspection. Riding across the plain with a number of cowboys, he sees the girl waiting for him and spurs his horse in her direction. The lovers' meeting is witnessed by an outlaw, who has just completed a term of imprisonment, which he owes to the ranger. Eager for revenge, he sees the possibility of striking at his enemy through his sweetheart, and making his way to the retreat of the outlaw band of which he is a member, plots with his fellow-outlaws to kidnap the girl. The plan is successfully carried out, and the ranger's sweetheart is carried to the outlaw's camp. The ranger finds her horse loose on the plain, and follows the tracks until they lead him to the outlaws' camp. He returns, and enlists the aid of a number of cowboys, who make a frontal attack on the camp, while the ranger himself makes a circuit and enters the camp through a secret rock tunnel, used by the outlaws themselves, fells the leader of the outlaws and escapes through the tunnel with the girl. The outlaws are caught between two fires — the ranger firing through the tunnel and the cowboys in front, and they throw up their hands. The vengeance has failed.
" GERONIMO'S LAST RAID."— Released November 9th. Length 2,000 feet.
Lieutenant Parker reports for duty to Major Wilkins, commanding Ft. Sill, where Geronimo is a prisoner. Parker quickly wins the love of Pauline, the major's daughter, and the undying hatred of Capt. Gray The captain plans to release Geronimo in the dead of night, throwing the blame on Parker. This he successfully does by obtaining, through an accident in the billiard room, possession of a letter from an Eastern friend to Lieutenant Parker. By tearing out a portion of this letter reading, " of course, Geronimo's escape would mean an advantage to you," he successfully deceives everyone". But meantime Parker has been hurriedly detailed to find Geronimo ; so Gray is sent out with a second detachment to overtake both Geronimo and Parker, and make them both prisoners. Through a friendly orderly, Pauline learns of the trick. She hastens after Parker to warn him, but falls into Geronimo's clutches. The lieutenant is himself captured by Geronimo, and, with Pauline, makes his escape. Later, he rescues Capt. Gray and his command from