Bigger Than Barnum's (1926)

Run Time - 60 min.  |  
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Ralph Ince both directed and co-starred in FBO's Bigger Than Barnum. The story focuses on the Blandins, a family of circus aerialists. When their boss Carl Rabelle (Ince) insists that the family perform their high-wire act without a net, the better to attract customers, young Robert Blandin (George O'Hara) refuses out of concern for his adopted sister Juanita (Viola Dana). Rabelle then appeals to the vanity of Robert's macho-man father Peter (Ralph Lewis), suggesting that Robert is too "yellow" to work minus a net -- and further suggesting that the boy's cowardice reflects on the whole family. Peter spurns his son and insists upon going on with their death-defying act, while Juanita loyally joins her father high above the crowd. Inevitably, Peter plummets to the ground and is permanently disabled, which serves to heighten his resentment towards his son. But when Peter and Juanita are trapped in a burning building, it is the "cowardly" Robert who comes to their rescue.

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Keywords

boss [employer], career, circus, coward, danger, family-member, handicap, hero, rescue, resentment, sister, vanity