Fun Size Review: An Unsullied Shield (1913)

A wastrel is ruining his family with his free-spending ways and it looks very much like he dates women who show their ankles. However, he falls asleep in the family portrait gallery and his ancestors climb down from their portraits to set him straight.

Rather staid direction from Charles Brabin renders the goofy plot a little less effective than it would be otherwise.

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

The wastrel sees the error of his ways and reforms.

Read my full-length review here.

If it were a dessert it would be: A Pre-Packaged Mini Fruit Pie. Good concept and edible but not exactly gourmet.

Availability: Released as part of Kino’s Edison: The Invention of the Movies box set.


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  1. Marie Roget

    In honor of An Unsullied Shield I am currently watching my somewhat old (ok, really old) tape of G&S’s Ruddigore. Here’s a little taste from one of that operetta’s Portrait Gallery’s scenes. Goofy plot indeed! Great for Gilbert and Sullivan fans though, among whom Brabin perhaps numbered himself:

  2. Marie Roget

    You’re welcome! I’d like to think Charles Brabin was a Gilbert and Sullivan fan, though An Unsullied Shield really is somewhat “meh” (sorry, CB!). Of course in Ruddigore or The Witch’s Curse G&S were lampooning some of the well-known melodramatic tropes of THEIR day. The ancestral portraits come to life to soundly admonish our hero for NOT doing a serious crime a day as per the family ages-old Witch’s Curse! Hilarious operetta in many ways, great melodies, wonderful patter songs (this is G&S after all), and our hero redeemed and the Curse broken in the end. Great stuff πŸ˜€ A shame Brabin couldn’t have made Shield a third as entertaining as possible source material Ruddigore.

    1. Fritzi Kramer

      That’s the thing, there was such potential here! And I need to put in my plug for That Lady in Ermine, which is shocking as I am neither a fan of Fox musicals nor Betty Grable. But when she carried Douglas Fairbanks Jr. up the stairs… Ha! I died.

      “Ooo, what I’ll do to that wild Hungarian!” πŸ˜‰

  3. Marie Roget

    That Lady in Ermine really is one of those guilty pleasure films, isn’t it? You feel a tiny bit guilty devoting the time to watching it, but oh, what a pleasure! I think all film buffs have a few- my sister calls them “class trash” πŸ˜€ I happen to like That Lady in Ermine also, as well as a personal favorite with improbable “statues can come to life” and “mythology can be silly fun” themes: One Touch of Venus. Will watch anytime at the drop of a hat. Ha indeed!

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