The Pagan (1929)

Passed   |    |  Drama


The Pagan (1929) Poster

A carefree South Seas native falls for the half-caste ward of a religious white man who desires her for himself.


6.9/10
315

Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review


User Reviews


10 November 2010 | st-shot
7
| Romance and racism in the South Seas
Slacker Henry Shoesmith (Ramon Novarro), the product of a white father and native mother has inherited a business he couldn't care less about. He'd rather pass his days taking in the beauty he was surrounded by on his South Sea island. When devious capitalist Roger Slater (Donald Crisp) shows up with his beautiful charge in tow to exploit the island Shoesmith's world is thrown into turmoil. With all his attention on Tito he ignores his business and Slater uses the opportunity to ruin him. Forever the romantic, Henry's is more concerned with the pursuit of Tito allowing him to become vulnerable to the iniquitous Slater whose designs of Christian salvation for Tito have given way to carnal cravings.

This silent made after the advent of sound film clumsily adds some out of sync singing (the immortal Pagan Love Song) to remain au courant but it is a catchy tune and not much of a distraction from the beautiful Tahitian landscape in which the naive lovers reside.

Novarro's disposition of child like innocence and laid back style fronted by his killer looks and smile charm you into his corner from beginning to end. A handsome Harpo, he is more sweet than seductive, displaying a talent for slapstick that makes him impossible to dislike. Dislike is all one can feel for the greedy, vengeful and hypocritical Slater. Crisp picks up where he left off as a racist lout in Broken Blossoms turning on a dime to gain and maim when needed. Bedecked in a white suit, earring and snarling most of the time Crisp's effective silent heavies totally belies the wise patient grandfatherly parts that would mark his sound period. Loudly attired Renee Adoree as a prostitute with principles has some fine scenes and serves as an ironic counterpoint to the hypocritical but respectable Slater.

With the vile Slater as a punching bag The Pagan reveals some ugly truths about western society but Novarro's irrepressible boyish charm keeps it upbeat most of the way. I would also add the warning that for a 48 hour period and perhaps longer you will not be able to get The Pagan Love Song melody out of your mind.

Critic Reviews


More Like This

Beauty's Worth

Beauty's Worth

The Sound of Fury

The Sound of Fury

Shoes

Shoes

You Can't Buy Everything

You Can't Buy Everything

Bardelys the Magnificent

Bardelys the Magnificent

Seven Keys to Baldpate

Seven Keys to Baldpate

Raffles

Raffles

The Front Page

The Front Page

Repeat Performance

Repeat Performance

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

Master of the House

Master of the House

Noah's Ark

Noah's Ark

Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Drama

The Best TV and Movies to Watch in August

Check out our editors' picks for a breakdown of the movies and shows we're excited about this month, including "Lovecraft Country," coming soon to HBO.

See our picks list

Around The Web

 | 

Powered by ZergNet

More To Explore

Search on Amazon.com