The Cloister's Touch (1910)

Melodrama | 31 January 1910

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HISTORY

The U.S. Library of Congress catalog gives the following description: “The film is set in the feudal era when a lord could press into service any of his tenant serfs. A happy little family of three is divided when the duke of the realm decides to take the wife as one of his courtesans. The beautiful young woman in not happy at court; she pines for her child and becomes ill. Her husband and son find refuge in a monastery, where the serf becomes a postulant. The duke, remorseful at the result of his selfish action, joins the monastic group, where he meets the serf he has wronged. The picture ends as the duke vows to the serf that he will help rear the boy and provide him with every advantage.”
       The 12 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World ran the following review: “A picture of feudal times, representing a handsome young wife torn from her husband for the amusement of a duke who was in the depths of boredom. The outraged husband seeks a monastery. The woman longs for her child until she goes insane and dies. The duke, realizing the outrage he has committed, attempts to commit suicide, but the cross on the dagger suggests another course, and he enters the same monastery as the outraged husband. They meet, and are about to fly at each other, but are prevented by the sanctity of the place. Here is enough dramatic opportunity for half a dozen good pictures, almost; yet they are all crowded into one, and a mighty interesting succession of scenes it makes, too. The audience will not applaud. The picture is too serious; but ... More Less

The U.S. Library of Congress catalog gives the following description: “The film is set in the feudal era when a lord could press into service any of his tenant serfs. A happy little family of three is divided when the duke of the realm decides to take the wife as one of his courtesans. The beautiful young woman in not happy at court; she pines for her child and becomes ill. Her husband and son find refuge in a monastery, where the serf becomes a postulant. The duke, remorseful at the result of his selfish action, joins the monastic group, where he meets the serf he has wronged. The picture ends as the duke vows to the serf that he will help rear the boy and provide him with every advantage.”
       The 12 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World ran the following review: “A picture of feudal times, representing a handsome young wife torn from her husband for the amusement of a duke who was in the depths of boredom. The outraged husband seeks a monastery. The woman longs for her child until she goes insane and dies. The duke, realizing the outrage he has committed, attempts to commit suicide, but the cross on the dagger suggests another course, and he enters the same monastery as the outraged husband. They meet, and are about to fly at each other, but are prevented by the sanctity of the place. Here is enough dramatic opportunity for half a dozen good pictures, almost; yet they are all crowded into one, and a mighty interesting succession of scenes it makes, too. The audience will not applaud. The picture is too serious; but they enjoy it none the less, and manifest their appreciation plainly enough. The actors have taken full advantage of the opportunity presented them and that, with the excellent photography, combine to make a satisfactory picture.”
       This movie was filmed at the Biograph studio at 11 East 14th Street in New York City.
       An advertisement in the 5 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World billed this film as “A Biograph Story of Religion’s Solace.” More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
BIOB2
p. 164.
BPL
pp. 122-123.
EMP
p. 59.
LCMP
p. 12, column 2.
LCPP
p. 176.
Moving Picture News
12 Feb 1910
p. 15tl.
Moving Picture World
5 Feb 1910
p. 178ta, 179ts, 187tl, 188tl.
Moving Picture World
12 Feb 1910
p. 215tr, 217ar.
The Daily Worker
p. 72.
Variety
5 Feb 1910
tr.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
PHOTOGRAPHY
DETAILS
Release Date:
31 January 1910
Copyright Claimant:
Biograph Co.
Copyright Date:
2 February 1910
Copyright Number:
J137957
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
993
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

“In the olden days when the common man was his feudal lord’s slave, many were the outrages perpetrated upon them with no redress save that which came from the hand of Providence, and tardy though the reckoning seemed, it was, nevertheless, inevitable. This subject shows a peasant family comprising the father, mother and little boy child. They are happy in their own sphere until one day several courtiers of a hunting party stopped at the humble home for refreshments. The men are particularly struck with the beauty of the young wife, and as their Duke is in the depths of boredom they suggest carrying her off to court. However, they think it best to first consult the Duke, who in the extreme of ennui, is most agreeable to the plans. Hence, the poor wife is torn from her husband and child and taken to court to be made a lady by the Duke. Here she has all her heart could wish for, as the Duke has fallen deeply in love with her. Still the one thing she longs for is her child. The Duke finally consents that she may go and get it. Back to her old home she is taken, only to find it deserted, her husband having, meanwhile, accepted the refuge offered by the monks and become a postulant at the monastery, taking the boy with him. From the fruitless journey she returns despairing, and through grief, her reason is shattered, so the Duke has presented other children, hoping that her mind may be restored, but she is not appeased, and her grief finds surcease in death. The Duke is plunged in the deepest despair at the ... +


“In the olden days when the common man was his feudal lord’s slave, many were the outrages perpetrated upon them with no redress save that which came from the hand of Providence, and tardy though the reckoning seemed, it was, nevertheless, inevitable. This subject shows a peasant family comprising the father, mother and little boy child. They are happy in their own sphere until one day several courtiers of a hunting party stopped at the humble home for refreshments. The men are particularly struck with the beauty of the young wife, and as their Duke is in the depths of boredom they suggest carrying her off to court. However, they think it best to first consult the Duke, who in the extreme of ennui, is most agreeable to the plans. Hence, the poor wife is torn from her husband and child and taken to court to be made a lady by the Duke. Here she has all her heart could wish for, as the Duke has fallen deeply in love with her. Still the one thing she longs for is her child. The Duke finally consents that she may go and get it. Back to her old home she is taken, only to find it deserted, her husband having, meanwhile, accepted the refuge offered by the monks and become a postulant at the monastery, taking the boy with him. From the fruitless journey she returns despairing, and through grief, her reason is shattered, so the Duke has presented other children, hoping that her mind may be restored, but she is not appeased, and her grief finds surcease in death. The Duke is plunged in the deepest despair at the outcome of what he now acknowledges an outrage and would have atoned with his own life, but that the cross handle of the dagger with which he was about to perform the dispatch suggests another course, and determining upon a life of penance he goes and offers himself to the monks. Here in the same monastery where all are equal he also becomes a postulant and he comes face to face with the outraged husband. There is a start and a slight inclination to rush at each other, but under the shadow of the cross they breathe those words of Christian charity ‘Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them who trespass against us.’ And as they pass into the chapel to vespers the sound of ‘Amen’ reverberates.”—5 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.