Curse of Greed (1914)

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A plot that would have put the Borgias to shame is the distinguishing feature of this swiftly-paced Melies 5-reeler. Financially embarrassed, the roguish Marquis De Lusky tries to borrow five grand from Webb, a crafty moneylender. Webb at first refuses but then agrees, on the condition that the Marquis will wed the wealthy, recently widowed Viscountess Kinsale. In exchange for the $5000 advance, the Marquis will pay Webb $250,000 when he comes into the Viscountess' fortune. Alas, this means that the Marquis will have to bump off his new bride and her young son, but that's the price one has to pay for financial security. To keep his eye on his investment, Webb gets a job as the young boy's tutor. Hoping to expedite the kid's demise, Webb arranges for him to be shanghaied by a scurrilous sea captain. Meanwhile, the Marquis bides his time, awaiting the chance to do in the Viscountess. Fortunately, the son returns in the company of his new friend, a lovable old seaman, and together the youngster and the oldster make short work of the scheming Marquis and Webb before any further damage can be done.