The Naulahka (1918)

Genres - Drama, Romance  |  
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In the days before television and the Internet, faraway places such as the Middle East and Asia -- and their cultures -- seemed especially mysterious and unfathomable. Rudyard Kipling was one author of the late 1800s and early 1900s who fed readers' taste for the exotic with his tales of India and its clashes with English life. In 1892 he co-wrote The Naulahka with Wolcott Balestier, and in late 1917 it was made into a motion picture. The story begins in Colorado where two towns are fighting to become a stop for the new railroad that is being built. When Nicholas Tarvin (Anotonio Moreno), the representative from one town, discovers that the rail owner's wife wants the Naulahka, a jeweled girdle from India, he travels there to get it for her. Tarvin's fiancée, Kate Sheriff (Helen Chadwick), has already gone to India because as a physician, she wants to help India's poor, suffering masses. While they are in India they become involved in halting the machinations of Stahbai, a gypsy queen (played by the famed dancer Doraldina), to depose the rightful heir to a throne. Although imperiled a number of times, Tarvin and Kate make it back home to Colorado to discover that their town has won the railroad. As the Maharajah, Swedish Warner Oland plays one of his usual Oriental characterizations.

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Keywords

aristocracy, bishop, couple, doctor/nurse, expose [revelation], family, fiancee, gypsy, husband, journey, kingdom, land, love, motive, opal, possession, prevention, prince, rescue, return, romance, royalty, scheme, wife