Bondage (1917)

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Some of the publicity material for Bondage identified its producer-director Ida May Park as the wife of filmmaker Joseph DeGrasse, as if this removed the "handicap" of being a woman director. Dorothy Phillips, who appeared in several of Park's films, was starred as Elinor Crawford, a small-town girl who becomes a reporter on a big-city newspaper -- and immediately plunges into the "Bohemian" lifestyle. Assigned to interview a condemned murderer, Elinor must first obtain permission from criminal lawyer Evan Klavert (William Stowell), who happens to hail from Elinor's hometown and who prudishly disapproves of her current mode of living. Out of spite, Elinor pens a column lampooning Klavert's blue-nosed attitudes and sells the piece to a lecherous magazine publisher. Before long, she has become the publisher's mistress and suffers mightily as a result. By film's end, she is more than willing to embrace the old, rock-bound moral values as personified by Evan Klavert, whom she has grown to love.