In this D.W. Griffith South Seas drama a religious zealot and his nephew are thrown together on a South Seas Island with an alcoholic beach comber and a native dancer. A battle to see who will "civilize" whom ensues.
Silent film impresario D.W. Griffith directed this passionate South Seas adventure, starring Clarine Seymour as White Almond Flower, an uninhibited, idol-worshipping island girl who is desired by both an alcoholic beach bum (Richard Barthelmess), and the sickly nephew (Creighton Hale) of a pious missionary (George MacQuarrie). Evil native chief Wando (Walter James) and his scheming white profiteer pal (Andrews Randolph) also have designs on White Almond Flower; when the men of her village all go off fishing, they lead a bloodthirsty cannibal attack in order to kidnap her, and as many other women as they can. The imperiled pagan sisters hole up at the missionary's house, and pray for a Griffith-style ride to their rescue. It's Christian morality vs. the lustful primitive nature of the savage in this curious film; one of the great director's lesser efforts. An interesting footnote is the presence of Ms. Seymour, then just 21, as the island girl. A beautiful, natural actress, she tragically died a month after THE IDOL DANCER premiered.
THE IDOL DANCER is a romantic South Seas adventure by silent film pioneer D.W. Griffith.
Theatrical release: March 21, 1920.
Filmed in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
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