Cycle of Fate (1916)

  • AllMovie Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

Share on

This crime drama was well-directed by the brilliant Marshall Neilan, who also wrote the screenplay and played a bit role. A pair of twins, a boy and a girl, are orphaned at an early age. They both have a birthmark on one hand, the result of a trauma suffered by their mother (Edith Johnson). The boy runs away and becomes involved with a gang of toughs, while the girl grows up to become a schoolteacher. As an adult, Joe Strong, also known as "Red Hand" (Wheeler Oakman) goes to work for Boss Kipper (Al W. Fisson), a powerful ward politician. Another member of the gang, Sid Aldrich (Lew Cody), has to temporarily flee the city, and he meets Maybelle Strong (Bessie Eyton). He convinces her to come to the city with him and delivers her into the hands of Kipper. Kipper leaves her in the care of Joe, who recognizes the red mark on her hand and becomes determined to save her. He summons the police, who rescue Maybelle, and as a result incurs the enmity of the gang. Joe plans to go straight, only pulling off one more heist to benefit his sweetheart, Mame O'Malley (Marion Warner), who is ill and needs to go to a sanitarium. But at the house he robs, he finds Aldrich attacking Maybelle. Joe kills the hoodlum and tells Maybelle to claim she did it in self-defense as he escapes. But when he arrives at the boat landing with Mame, Joe finds Detective Treem (Fred Hearn) waiting for him. The detective, however, believes that Joe did society a favor by killing Aldrich, and he allows him to get away.