White Terror (1915)

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Future director Hobart Henley was the leading player in the Universal-IMP four-reeler The White Terror. Written by famed "muckraker" Raymond L. Schrock, the film was a dual exposé of unsanitary sweatshops and quack doctors. The hero, newspaper owner Matthew Brand (Henley), tries to awaken his future father-in-law Emerson Boyd (Howard Crampton) of the miserable working conditions in Crampton's factory. The villain, phony doctor David Duncan (William Welsh), works overtime to discredit Brand, the better to claim Boyd's daughter Eleanor (Frances Nelson) for himself. Director Stuart Paton makes his points in broad strokes, at one juncture contrasting a fancy society banquet with the meager repast served to the sweatshop employees.