Douglas Fairbanks Sr. stars as Ned Thacker, who is born during a Kansas cyclone (coincidentally the same manner in which Fairbanks' real-life contemporary Buster Keaton came into the world!) and is thus imbued with the spirit of adventure. Having been virtually weaned on Alexandre Dumas' novel The Three Musketeers, Ned grows up dedicated to old-fashioned chivalry. Alas, his well-meaning efforts to emulate his Musketeer idols nearly always backfire in a hilariously disastrous fashion. Ultimately, however, he is afforded an opportunity to rescue heroine Dorothy Moran (Marjorie Daw) in a true D'Artagnan-like manner. Unfortunately, only the first three reels of A Modern Musketeer are known to exist. Happily, however, this fragment includes a delightful dream sequence in which Fairbanks imagines himself to be a 16th-century swashbuckler -- a fascinating (and arguably more enjoyable) precursor to his own 1921 screen version of The Three Musketeers.
by Hal Erickson synopsis