Frame-Up (1915)

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Five reels were expended on the melodramatic contortions of Universal's The Frame-Up. The story is set in a corruption-ridden small town, where honest Ned Harter (Albert MacQuarrie) bucks the political machine and runs for mayor. Miraculously, Harter wins the election, whereupon the crooked politicos try to bribe him into their way of thinking. When he proves to be untouchable, the bad guys, led by white slaver Luke Simms (George Fawcett), contrive to frame Harter on a trumped-up murder charge. But with the unexpected last-minute assistance of his own wife -- who has quite a tale to tell on the witness stand -- Harter manages to confound his enemies, retaining both his office and his integrity well past the "End" title. And, amazingly, things work out okay for the real murderer as well, since he isn't the actual villain of the piece.