Friday, November 11, 2011

Hearts in Exile - 1915

Country: USA
Language: English
Director: James Young
Writers: Owen Davis (scenario), John Oxenham (novel), James Young
Stars: Clara Kimball Young, Montagu Love and Claude Fleming
Release Date: 12 April 1915 (USA)
Also known as: Hearts Afire USA (reissue title)
Production Co: World Film
Runtime: 59 min
Sound Mix: Silent
Color: Black and White
Plot Keywords: Nihilist | Bigamy | Chase | Grave | Unrequited Love | Siberia | Flashback | Cross | Marriage Of Convenience | Gunfight | Russia | Love Triangle | Love Rectangle | Charity | Secret Police | Estranged Husband Estranged Wife Relationship | Wedding | Prison Escape | Melodrama | Self Sacrifice | Charity Worker | Presumed Dead | Adultery | Switched Identities | Based On Novel
Genres: Drama
In Czarist Russia, attractive Clara Kimball Young (as Hope aka Anna Ivanovna) has "consecrated her life to work among Russia's persecuted poor." She dispenses food, medicine, and funds to the needy, from a busy charity headquarters. Poor doctor Vernon Steele (as Paul Pavloff) helps as much as he can, and wealthy merchant Claude Fleming (as Serge) donates money. Both men are in love with Ms. Kimball Young. In fact, her "pretty face" attracts most men in Russia. Another significant suitor is married Count Montagu Love (as Nicolai), who doesn't know how to take "Nyet!" for an answer…
Although Mr. Fleming is a nice guy, Kimball Young loves Mr. Steele. However, to help with her work for the poor, she marries the wealthier Fleming. Unfortunately, both men are jailed as the revolution picks up steam. As married Fleming is sentenced to serve more time, Steele decided to trade identities with his friend, to help Kimball Young and Fleming remain together.
But, as fate would have it, a mix-up puts Kimball Young with Steele in Siberia. Since she's still married to Fleming, the two must resist their sexual urges. Then, one day they learn Fleming has died. As she is free from holy matrimony, the lovers call upon Jesus Christ to preside over a hasty wedding ceremony. The couple is happy until "you-know-who" shows up alive…
The story concludes conveniently, as you might expect from seeing this plot play out both before and after this 1915 feature, with various settings. "Hearts in Exile" was one of the last in the series of films Kimball Young made with actor-director and husband James Young. Like much of what she did around the time, it was a success. Kimball Young was, at this time, one of the most popular stars in Hollywood. "Hearts in Exile" was #22 in Motion Picture Magazine's poll for the year; Kimball Young emotes well, but readers preferred her performances in "My Official Wife" (1914) and "Trilby" (1915).

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