Legion of Death (1918)

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The first film to be produced at Metro's California studios, Tod Browning's The Legion of Death was a rather muddled fictional account of a genuine "women's battalion" fighting the Hun on behalf of Kerensky and his Allied Commission. Edith Storey starred as Princess Marya, an American-educated Russian noblewoman taking a stand against the widespread dissatisfaction among the Russian troops, many of whom had fallen prey to German bribery. Organizing her battalion of women, Marya is send into the trenches by Kerensky (H. L. Swisher), where the battalion is almost wiped out by the enemy. Our heroine, however, is saved in the nick of time by the arrival of American volunteers in general and handsome Captain Rodney Willard (Philo McCullough) in particular. Interestingly, The Legion of Death was released in March of 1918, six months prior to the real-life arrival of American troops in Murmansk.