Fun Size Review: The Curse of Quon Gwon (1916)

Marion Wong was just twenty-one when she wrote, directed, produced and designed the costumes for her own feature film. Naturally, some modern historians are trying to find the man who must have helped her. (There is no eyeroll GIF big enough.)

As the earliest known Chinese-American feature, The Curse of Quon Gwon is important but it’s also a solid, enjoyable melodrama. Wong shows considerable talent and it’s a shame that she never directed another picture.

How does it end? Hover or tap below for a spoiler.

Attempts to drive away the new bride fail and she and her husband are reunited.

Read my full-length review here, which also includes some debunking of the “she MUST have had help!” myth.

If it were a dessert it would be: That secret family cake recipe that’s oh so tasty!

Availability: The Curse of Quon Gwon is available on DVD as an extra for the Hollywood Chinese documentary. It is accompanied by a suitable piano score. (Please note that the film’s title cards do not survive, nor does its scenario. The film is presented sans titles but would not have been released in 1916 without them.)


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  1. popegrutch

    For some reason I didn’t remember/realize she was so young! It’s a great movie. The real tragedy is that she didn’t manage to get it distributed during her lifetime. Where was this “obvious” man to help out with that end of things?

    1. Fritzi Kramer

      Right? If she allegedly borrowed Charlie Chaplin’s cameraman, why couldn’t she get his distribution guys too? πŸ˜‰ But seriously, it’s sad to think of the number of brilliant filmmakers whose careers were smothered in the cradle due to prejudice, distribution issues, etc.

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