Man and His Soul (1916)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Message Movie  |   Countries - USA  |  
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This picture has touches of that allegorical affectation so popular in the 1910s, making it appear slightly ridiculous to latter-day audiences. John Conscience (matinee idol Francis X. Bushman) is a professor with progressive ideas. This does not sit well with the college's conservative financiers, so they fire him. Because he sticks to his set of values, he has a problem finding work. He discovers a kindred soul in Mary Knowles (Beverly Bayne, Bushman's co-star in film and in life), who keeps getting fired because she won't let her bosses manhandle her. With the help of John's friend, Stephen Might (Charles Prince), they both get jobs. But John loses his once again because he favors the underdog. When he finds Mary and Stephen Jr. (John Davidson) together, he thinks that he's lost his girl too. So he changes from John Conscience to John Power and dives into the financial world with the intention of callously ruining the Mights. Just when he has about vanquished the family, he discovers that Mary, who has left the Mights and become a stenographer in one of Power's own factories, has loved him all along. The factory's structure catches fire and Power -- who has once again become Conscience -- saves Mary from certain death.

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Keywords

business-ethics, factory, fire, ruthlessness