Somewhat obscure Tod Browning feature with Aileen Pringle and Conway Tearle. About a group of con artists, who go from small time circus side shows with their spooky physic act, to ripping off unsuspecting upper crust society folk. Michael Nash (Tearle) a crafty thief, is the mastermind who co-heir’s a shady Gypsy troop into being his partners in crime. The lovely Zara (Pringle) whom he falls in love with, is the key element to his schemes. “The Mystic” who is soon revered for her amazing power to contact the spirit world. She rises to quick heights of fame.
All is going well, when Michael suddenly has some unexpected misgivings on running away with the inheritance of a young woman Doris Merrick (Gladys Hulette) who he actually respects. Zara suspects that there is more to her and Michael’s relationship than her being his self appointed personal protector, and the old green eyed monster rears it’s ugly head. Meantime, the girls legal guardian Bradshaw (David Torrence) has gotten wise to the whole business and alerts the authorities. Zara Fox’s Michael, but He convinces her that his Love is genuine, and the couple plan to give the loot back to Doris. But fellow miscreants Zazarack and Anton (Mitchell Lewis and Robert Ober), don’t buy the change of heart, and demand their un-fair share. Just then the police storm in and kayos ensues!
Tod Browning (12 July 1880 – 6 October 1962) was an American motion picture actor, director and screenwriter.
Browning’s career spanned the silent and talkie eras. Best-known as the director of Dracula (1931 in film), the cult classic Freaks (1932 in film), and classic silent film collaborations with Lon Chaney, Sr., Browning directed many movies in a wide range of genres.
He was born Charles Albert Browning, Jr., in Louisville, Kentucky, the second son of Charles Albert and Lydia Browning, and the nephew of baseball star Pete Browning. As a young boy, he put on amateur plays in his backyard. He was fascinated by the circus and carnival life, and at the age of 16 he ran away from his well-to-do family to become a performer.
Changing his name to “Tod”, he traveled extensively with sideshows, carnivals, and circuses. His jobs included working as a talker (barker, as the term is also known, isn’t correct) for the Wild Man of Borneo, performing a live… read more