Taint (1914)

Genres - Drama  |  
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Good action and a plotline with a few unusual twists put this drama a cut above other program pictures. Vera Knight (Ruby Hoffman) is hired to assist a biologist, Madame Bartlett. Since Vera is a naive girl from the country, she falls prey to the charms of Madame Bartlett's secretary and bookkeeper, Paul Chilton (Edward Jose). The inevitable happens, and she goes home to give birth to a little boy while Chilton makes excuses for not marrying her. Vera returns to her employer, who discovers that Chilton has also been stealing from her. Madame confronts him and he kills her in the ensuing struggle. He escapes, and Vera, who is caught bending over Madame's dead body, is convicted of her murder. The girl spends the next 20 years in jail, but is finally released on good behavior. When she is released, she comes looking for her son, now called Walter (Creighton Hale), but when she hears how well he is doing, she decides not to involve herself in his life. Instead she goes to work for the secret service, where she learns that Walter has supposedly inherited his father's criminal mind. The truth, however, is that the father, Chilton, is going by an assumed name and controlling Walter, who has run up a large gambling debt. It is finally discovered that Chilton is responsible for the theft of some government papers, and while he is being pursued, his train jumps off the tracks and he is killed. Walter is cleared of any wrongdoing and is reunited with his mother.