Siren's Song (1919)

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Theda Bara's career with Fox was near its end when Bara made this romantic melodrama. Marie Bernais (Bara) is no vamp -- she's merely the lively daughter of a Breton lighthouse keeper. But Jules Bernais (Alfred Fremont) is so stern and conservative in his outlook that he calls her a siren for raising her pretty voice in song. He becomes even angrier with her when she shows little interest in the attentions of minister Raoul Nieppe (L.C. Shumway). He finally makes his daughter's life so unbearable that she tries to drown herself. But she is saved by Hector Remey (Paul Weigel), an old music teacher who takes her to Paris so she can develop her voice. She becomes a success and has a happy romance with the wealthy Gaspard Prevost (Albert Roscoe). But just then Nieppe shows up, and he's shocked at her affair. He insists that she return to her old village and sing for the soldiers who are going off to war. She agrees, but finds her father as stern and unforgiving as he ever was. His ire towards her causes him to have a heart attack and the shock of his death turns Marie towards spiritual matters. She leaves Prevost in favor of Nieppe, and sings for the soldiers even though she has caught cold and knows it will destroy her voice. She discovers, however, that Nieppe's interest in her is less pure and far more prurient than he was letting on, so she denounces him. Prevost, who really loves her, returns to her side.