Synopsis by Janiss Garza
This wasn't the first time the Fyodor Dostoevsky novel was made into a motion picture -- it was filmed before in 1913. The story of Rodin Raskoinikoff (Derwent Hall Caine), who is forced to flee his native Russia because of his radical ideas, is told in just five reels -- only a bit more than an hour long. In this brief period of time, Rodin comes to America, kills the miser Andreas Valeskoff (Sidney Bracey) so that he can spread his wealth amongst the poor, escapes punishment when Porphyius (Robert Cummings) is accused of the crime and finds redemption and a true conscience through the love of streetwalker Sonia Marmeladoff (Marguerite Courtot). One gets the idea that Dostoevsky was not meant to be picturized in such a fashion, especially in a couple of scenes which all-too-obviously use fake backdrops. One item of note -- the film's star, Derwent Hall Caine, was the son of Hall Caine, an author whose work was quite popular with women readers around the turn of the century.