The Last Deal (1910)

Drama | 27 January 1910

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HISTORY

The U.S. Library of Congress catalog gives the following description: “This film is built around a bank employee (Owen Moore) whose addiction to gambling causes him to appropriate bank funds. The bank president (George Nicholls) allows him time to make restitution. The employee pawns his wife’s jewelry and with the proceeds gets in a poker game. His brother-in-law (James Kirkwood), whom he has never met, learns what has happened, joins the poker game, and wins all the money. He turns his winnings over to the compulsive gambler to make restitution at the bank, but his employer fires him anyway. He dejectedly returns home to his wife (Linda Arvidson), and the last scene shows him with his family as he tears up playing cards and vows never to gamble again.”
       The 12 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World ran the following review: “A gambling story which presents a moral so palpable that it requires no explanation to make it plain. The novelty lies in having the husband come in contact with his brother-in-law, who is winning money to help him make restitution. The young man is saved, but his punishment includes the loss of his position. The moral influence of this picture should be strong. Gambling is well understood to be a dangerous vice, no matter in what form it may be indulged, but perhaps few realize the actual status until it is shown to them in some such hideous form as this. Whether the Biograph people sought to preach a sermon against gambling or not is uncertain, but that they have done so, and very effectively, will be admitted by practically everyone who sees this picture. Dramatically and ... More Less

The U.S. Library of Congress catalog gives the following description: “This film is built around a bank employee (Owen Moore) whose addiction to gambling causes him to appropriate bank funds. The bank president (George Nicholls) allows him time to make restitution. The employee pawns his wife’s jewelry and with the proceeds gets in a poker game. His brother-in-law (James Kirkwood), whom he has never met, learns what has happened, joins the poker game, and wins all the money. He turns his winnings over to the compulsive gambler to make restitution at the bank, but his employer fires him anyway. He dejectedly returns home to his wife (Linda Arvidson), and the last scene shows him with his family as he tears up playing cards and vows never to gamble again.”
       The 12 Feb 1910 Moving Picture World ran the following review: “A gambling story which presents a moral so palpable that it requires no explanation to make it plain. The novelty lies in having the husband come in contact with his brother-in-law, who is winning money to help him make restitution. The young man is saved, but his punishment includes the loss of his position. The moral influence of this picture should be strong. Gambling is well understood to be a dangerous vice, no matter in what form it may be indulged, but perhaps few realize the actual status until it is shown to them in some such hideous form as this. Whether the Biograph people sought to preach a sermon against gambling or not is uncertain, but that they have done so, and very effectively, will be admitted by practically everyone who sees this picture. Dramatically and photographically it is quite as good as the best.”
       This movie was filmed at the Biograph studio at 11 East 14th Street in New York City.
       An advertisement in the 29 Jan 1910 Moving Picture World called this film “A Story Teaching a Wholesome Lesson.” More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
BIOB2
p. 163.
BPL
pp. 122-123.
EMP
p. 179.
LCMP
p. 32, column 2.
LCPP
p. 198.
Moving Picture News
12 Feb 1910
p. 15tl.
Moving Picture World
29 Jan 1910
p. 136tl, 136ta, 137ts, 146tl.
Moving Picture World
12 Feb 1910
p. 216tr.
The Daily Worker
pp. 71-72.
Variety
5 Feb 1910
tr.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
PHOTOGRAPHY
DETAILS
Release Date:
27 January 1910
Copyright Claimant:
Biograph Co.
Copyright Date:
29 January 1910
Copyright Number:
J137856
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
991
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

“In this Biograph subject a most powerful moral is presented against all forms of gambling, and it is indeed a convincing lesson to those given to such follies, for although the hero was rescued from his desperation by means of the game, still the ordeal he passed through was so terrible that he swore never to tempt fate again in the game of chance. At the solicitation of a friend, who paints his possibilities in brilliant hues, he uses his employer’s money in stock gambling. His is the experience of so many others; he loses, and of course takes more in the vain hope of recouping. It is the old story. He finds his neck in the noose of desperation, particularly as he learns that his books are to be examined by the expert accountant. Discovery is inevitable, so he confesses to his employer, who grants him one day to make up the deficit. It seems hoping against hope, but he goes home and tells his wife of his troubles and she allows him to take her jewelry on which to raise a portion of the amount, but he declares he can borrow the balance. Pawning the jewelry, he takes the proceeds to a gambling parlor, with the virtual impression of at least doubling them. So he enters the game. Meanwhile, his wife at home is praying that he may be successful in obtaining the amount of his indebtedness, of course not knowing the method he has adopted. While she is thus employed, her brother from the West, whom she has not seen in years, and who has never seen her husband, arrives. He notices her uneasiness, and when ... +


“In this Biograph subject a most powerful moral is presented against all forms of gambling, and it is indeed a convincing lesson to those given to such follies, for although the hero was rescued from his desperation by means of the game, still the ordeal he passed through was so terrible that he swore never to tempt fate again in the game of chance. At the solicitation of a friend, who paints his possibilities in brilliant hues, he uses his employer’s money in stock gambling. His is the experience of so many others; he loses, and of course takes more in the vain hope of recouping. It is the old story. He finds his neck in the noose of desperation, particularly as he learns that his books are to be examined by the expert accountant. Discovery is inevitable, so he confesses to his employer, who grants him one day to make up the deficit. It seems hoping against hope, but he goes home and tells his wife of his troubles and she allows him to take her jewelry on which to raise a portion of the amount, but he declares he can borrow the balance. Pawning the jewelry, he takes the proceeds to a gambling parlor, with the virtual impression of at least doubling them. So he enters the game. Meanwhile, his wife at home is praying that he may be successful in obtaining the amount of his indebtedness, of course not knowing the method he has adopted. While she is thus employed, her brother from the West, whom she has not seen in years, and who has never seen her husband, arrives. He notices her uneasiness, and when he learns the cause, and the short time there is to make good, pulls out his roll of ready cash, but finds it far too short of the required amount. At length an idea strikes him. He is an expert gambler and will go to the parlor and try his luck. He enters the game, just as his brother-in-law, whom he does not know, is enjoying a streak of good fortune. He has hardly started before things begin to come his way, and at last the game is between him and his brother-in-law, the others having drawn out. Being an experienced gambler, never losing his nerve, he has the best of it. It is a desperate battle, ending with the Westerner in possession of all the chips. The poor husband staggers home, and driven to the wall, is about to finish it all in the conventional way, when the Westerner enters. Each now sees who his vis-à-vis was, and the young man is able to make restitution, but he loses his position, for he has lost the reputation of trustworthiness. The Westerner, however, is prosperous and promises to assist him, at the same time impressing him with the criminal folly of gambling.”—29 Jan 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.