The Love Flower (1920)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Melodrama, Romantic Drama, Detective Film  |   Run Time - 70 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

A more exotic story than 1920s audiences had come to expect from D.W. Griffith, The Love Flower nonetheless adheres to Griffith's usual Dickensian approach to storytelling. There's an early outrage (the murder of a man), a child with a clouded past (the murderer's daughter), a decades-long vendetta (a detective devotes his life to tracking down the murderer) and a last minute struggle to the death (this one expertly filmed underwater). The film's locale is a remote tropical island, permitting leading lady Carole Dempster to go through her gamine paces with less clothing than she'd be required to wear in an urban or rural setting. Richard Barthelmess plays the "outsider" who falls in love with island girl Dempster. Her father George MacQuarrie, wanted by the law for killing his wife's lover, is himself presumably deep-sixed at fadeout time. But since MacQuarrie is essentially a sympathetic character, detective Anders Randolph looks the other way when evidence of MacQuarrie's survival presents itself. Based on a story by Ralph Stock, The Love Flower and Griffith's earlier The Idol Dancer were both conceived during the director's 1919 business-and-pleasure visit to Nassau (where the exteriors for both films were shot).



outsider, tropical, daughter, detective, father, island, on-the-run