The Dragon Painter (1919)

Run Time - 53 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Janiss Garza

This was one of Sessue Hayakawa's more unusual films. His character, Tatsu, is a brilliant but half-mad artist who lives in the mountains and is constantly searching for his soul mate, whom he calls his "dragon princess." He finds her in the city -- she is Ume Ko (Tsuru Aoki, Hayakawa's real-life wife), the daughter of master painter Kano Indara (Edward Peil). Indara's one regret is that he never had a son to succeed him and Tatsu answers this unfulfilled wish. But after he and Ume are married, Tatsu looses his ambition and genius. Ume feels that their happiness is the cause of this, so she goes away. Tatsu believes she has committed suicide and is distraught. But he has a vision that his dragon princess tells him he must carry on with his art, so he does. Then he finds out that Ume is not dead, and when he hears the reason she left, they are gladly reunited.