Afgrunden was the first film by Asta Nielsen, who had up until then only acted in theatre. Having grown up with the naturalist style of acting with the Royal Theatre, in Afgrunden she broke away from the acting style of the time, known as `the grand gesture’. And with great success: in Denmark and far beyond the film was a great hit. Nielsen plays Magda, a young lady who goes to the circus with her lover. There one of the artistes is greatly charmed by Magda, and the feeling is mutual. Magda deserts her fiancé for a life as circus artiste, but he doesn’t give up that easily… —International Film Festival Rotterdam
Peter Urban Gad (12 February 1879 – 26 December 1947) was a Danish film director. He directed 40 film between 1910 and 1927. His wife Asta Nielsen starred in 30 of his films. Also in his debut the famous movie Afgrunden (The Abyss) from 1910. They moved to Germany in 1911 where Gad worked until 1922. —Wikipedia
This is one hell of a masterpiece for such an early era of cinema. It is a cinematically and artistically superb film with some advanced camera work (a bit of close-ups, some tracking shots (rare in that period) etc.) , restricted acting by the great Asta Nielsen (how amazing is the fact that this was her debut film?) , well developed story and NO happy ending! That's why I LOVE Danish films.