Budapest bar entertainer Zara is a discontented alcoholic who is pursued by many men but lives with novelist Carl Salter. A strange man (Tony) shows up on Salter’s estate claiming that Zara is actually Maria, the wife of his close friend Bruno. Maria, Tony claims, had her memory destroyed during a World War I invasion ten years ago. Zara doesn’t remember but leaves with Tony to Salter’s dismay. Bruno, now an officer in the Italian army, tries to coax Maria’s memory back on his large estate. No one is really sure if Zara is Maria, and when Salter shows up with a mental case that he claims is the real Maria, everyone on Bruno’s estate is desperately searching for the truth. —IMDb
George Fitzmaurice (13 February 1885 — 13 June 1940) was a French-born film director and producer. Fitzmaurice’s career first started as a set designer on stage. Beginning in 1914 until his death in 1940, he directed over 80 films, including several successful movies such as The Son of the Sheik, Raffles, Mata Hari, and Suzy.
At the beginning of his directorial career Fitzmaurice was astute at directing stage actresses in their initial films when the first wave of great Broadway stars migrated to motion pictures during World War I era, including Mae Murray, Elsie Ferguson, Fannie Ward, Helene Chadwick, Irene Fenwick, Gail Kane and Edna Goodrich.
Son of the Sheik is his most famous extant silent film, no doubt aided by the sudden death of its star, Rudolph Valentino. Lilac Time is a classic war/romance film. Fitzmaurice however directed scores of silent films of which the majority of them are lost to the ravages of decompostion. Recent discoveries in Gosfilmofond in Russia… read more