The Fleshly School Controversy
Buchanan and the Press
Buchanan and the Law

The Critical Response
Harriett Jay

Site Diary
Site Search



Written and directed by Sidney Morgan
Produced by Frank E. Spring for Progress
Langhorn Burton Peter Beresford/Julian Grey
Violet Graham Vivian Beresford
Gladys Mason Yolande Hampton
Arthur Lennard Robert Hampden
J. Denton-Thompson Williams
Sidney Paxton Billings
Babs Ronald Helen Beresford
Warris Linden Simon Oppenheim
Format: 35mm, 1,676m/5,447 ft, six reels. Filmed at Shoreham, near Brighton.


The Stage (26 August, 1920 - p.15)

A Shoreham Man’s Shadow.

     I met Langhorne Burton, who tells me he has been to Sussex for the taking of three new films at the Morgan Studios, Shoreham-on-Sea, and is about to return to start a fourth. The one just finished is a picturisation of the once celebrated Haymarket success “A Man’s Shadow,” in which he performs the dual rôle made famous in the past by the late Sir Herbert Tree. His next will be lead in Besant’s “Children of Gibeon,” in which Alice de Winton will also take an important character. Dickens’s “Little Dorrit,” with Lady Tree, George Foley, and little Joan Morgan in the cast, taken by the same firm, will shortly be shown at the London Pavilion. As an old Dickensian, I hope to report favourably upon its merits.



The Bioscope (9 December, 1920 - p.35)


Daily Mail (11 December, 1920 - p.1


The Bioscope (16 December, 1920 - p.73)

“A Man’s Shadow”

Innocent man suffers through the misdeeds of his unknown
double—Robert Buchanan’s well-known story adapted by
Sidney Morgan—Good staging and excellent photography.

Butcher (Progress)                               5 reels

Featuring: Langhorne Burton, Violet Graham, Gladys Mason,
Arthur Lennard, J. Warris Linden, T. Denton Thompson,
Sydney Paxton, Babs Ronald

     Unknown to himself, Peter Beresford, a young married man in financial difficulties, has a double, Julian Grey, who, aware of their resemblance, impersonates him and murders a moneylender. Beresford is arrested after receiving a forged note containing some of the stolen money, purporting to come from Yolande, wife of his barrister friend, Hampden, but really sent by Grey, who knows of Yolande’s secret acquaintance in the past with Beresford. At the trial Beresford refuses to say whence he obtained the stolen money, but Hampden, who is defending him, receives from Grey a copy of the forged letter, and, believing Yolande unfaithful, dies of shock. Beresford is sentenced to death, but, while he is awaiting execution, Yolande, who alone knows of Grey’s existence, takes up the threads of the case, and tracks the murderer down. Eventually Grey is arrested, and Beresford set free to return to his wife and child.


     Robert Buchanan’s powerful story of an innocent man’s sufferings through the crimes of his unknown double has been adapted to the screen and produced, with very fair success, by Sidney Morgan. The stage play, it will be remembered, provided the late Sir Herbert Tree with one of his most effective rôles.
     In the film version the story seems somewhat unnecessarily complicated, and Mr. Morgan has evidently found it difficult to interweave the various dramatic threads into an orderly design. He would, perhaps, have been wiser to simplify the plot instead of endeavouring to cram in a mass of incident of which, as producer, he has not been able to make full dramatic use. For instance, the evidence against Beresford at the trial is so overwhelming that his little daughter’s effort to save him by perjury could obviously have had no importance. It would have been better to make Beresford’s conviction depend largely upon her testimony or else to have cut out the incident altogether.
     Although the play suffers to some extent from a plethora of ill-digested detail the plot is unquestionably strong, and it holds the attention despite some weaknesses in the production. In the dual role Langhorne Burton gives an effective performance with an occasional tendency to staginess, but, on the whole, natural and human. Other parts are played competently, if without special distinction, by a sufficiently well chosen cast.
     The staging does credit to the resources of the Progress studios, the trial scene being a particularly good setting. There is some artistic lighting and the photography is excellent throughout.
     Although both scenario and production show some room for improvement “A Man’s Shadow” makes a sound entertainment. The title has real drawing power, and the film itself is by no means disappointing. Appropriately advertised, the picture should prove a good attraction with middle-class audiences.



The Bioscope (30 December, 1920 - p.70)


The Bioscope (29 December, 1921 - p.15)


Hastings & St. Leonards Observer (31 December, 1921 - p.5)


Western Morning News (7 January, 1922 - p.7)

     SAVOY PICTURE HOUSE.—Two interesting items in the programme commencing on Monday are “A Man’s Shadow,” featuring Langhorne Burton, and “Love’s Pay Day,” in which Rosemary Thebe takes the leading part. The former is from Sir Herbert Tree’s Haymarket success by Robert Buchanan, while the other is an absorbing story of a young fishing girl who, in consequence of love of gaiety, was the means of the downfall of her lover. On Thursday the chief exhibit will be the All-British film entitled “Nothing Else Matters,” featuring Hugh E. Wright, Moyna Maggill, and Betty Balfour. This is a great human story, interwoven with which is a touching love plot. Next comes “The Sea Wolf,” one of Jack London’s enthralling stories, and an excellent comedy will complete the programme.



Grantham Journal (14 January, 1922 - p.7)


The Burnley News (18 February, 1922 - p.15)


     The work of Langhorne Burton is so well known to patrons of the Alhambra that the announcement of his appearance in “A Man’s Shadow” on Thursday, Friday and Saturday next will meet with general approval. Fresh from Butcher’s Service, this film gives Langhorne Burton a great opportunity of displaying his ability in as much as he figures in a dual role. From the beginning to end events move rapidly, and as they are interpreted by a strong cast the picture leaves nothing to be desired. Supporting Langhorne Burton are Violet Graham, Arthur Lennard, Gladys Mason, J. Warris Linden, Babs Ronald, T. Denton Thompson, and Sydney Paxton.



Exeter and Plymouth Gazette (17 July, 1922 - p.2)


[Back to Film List]



Directed by Fred Paul
Script by Charles Barnett and J. Bertram Brown
Produced by Screen Plays (The BFI lists the production company as the Master Film Company.)
George Foley Dave Purvis
Nora Hayden Tress Purvis
Jack Raymond Mark
Moya Nugent Sybil Garfield
John Stuart Philip Compton
Cecil Morton York Squire Garfield
Frank Tennant Arthur Tredgold


The Bioscope (30 September, 1920 - p.54)

     I hear from John Stuart, who is playing juvenile lead in Screen Plays’ “Lights of Home,” in Cornwall, that the company have met with extremely bad weather during their stay in the West country. The party journeyed from London by road, travelling a distance of 270 miles to Fowey, where many of the exteriors will be taken.



The Bioscope (7 October, 1920 - p.63)

     Cecil Morton York writes me from Fowey, where he is playing in “The Lights of Home,” now being produced by Stirling Films. Mr. York says that this is the first experience of playing in sunlight by artificial light, the producer taking no risks, and carrying a lighting plant which can be used in any interior, or as supplementary to the ordinary daylight. The cottage interiors of this Cornish village will therefore provide authentic settings which will entirely eliminate studio work in this adaptation of a favourite drama.



The Bioscope (16 December, 1920 - pp.70-71)

“The Lights of Home”

Sound and pleasing story of Cornish fisher life—
Beautiful settings anf capable acting.

British Exhibitors Films                               5 Reels

Featuring: George Foley

     Tress Purvis, the daughter of Dave Purvis, a Cornish fisherman, falls victim to the seduction of Arthur Tredgold, an artist, who deserts her after a promise of marriage. Mark, a young sailor who has grown up with Tress, proposes marriage, and on his refusal goes away to sea. Philip, a friend of Mark, is in love with Sybil, the niece of Garfield, a neighbouring squire, who wishes her to marry Tredgold, a friend of the family. Tredgold inspires Sybil with jealousy against Philip and induces her to break her engagement. Tress hears of the marriage arranged between Tredgold and Sybil and denounces him in her hearing. Dave discovers the truth, and vows to kill Tredgold. There is a struggle between the two on the top of a cliff, over which Tredgold falls and is believed to be killed. He is, however, rescued by the ship on which Mark is returning home, and brought to book, when Sybil and Philip, Tress and Mark are happily united.

     Adapted from the popular drama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan, this simple story of the lives and loves of Cornish village folk is one which will meet with general approval from the public. There is no involved or complicated plot, all is plain sailing, and it is not difficult at any moment to foretell the general trend of events, and there is no great subtlety of character drawing, but it is a clean and wholesome story of sound interest, charmingly set amongst some of the most beautiful spots on the Cornish coast, of which Mr. Fred. Paul, the producer, has made excellent use.
     The acting is of great merit, the outstanding performance being that of Mr. George Foley, who gives a realistic and thoroughly pleasing picture of a fine type of Cornish fisherman. In appearance he is the part to the life, and in every phase of the character, both in the genial simplicity of his every-day life, and when his primitive passions are roused by the injury to his daughter Mr. Foley grasps the situation without ever overstepping the framework of the picture. Miss Nora Hayden as Tress, Mr. Jack Raymond as Mark, and Mr. Cecil Morton Yorke as Squire Garfield are prominent members of an excellent cast.



The Times (20 December, 1920 - p.8)


     The Lights of Home, the new film based on the play by Mr. George R. Sims and Mr. Robert Buchanan, is full of excitements, with one notably fine piece of acting by Mr. George Foley as an old Cornish fisherman, whose daughter has been betrayed by an artist “from London.” The artist then tries to marry the niece of the squire, but is duly frustrated in his schemes and is finally kicked out of the village. But to us the method of production of the film is more interesting than the film itself. To a large extent “studio work” has been done away with. There are very few interior scenes at all, and most of those that there are are laid in humble cottages. The film was taken in the neighbourhood of Fowey, the players being taken to their destination by charabanc. An electrical installation was carried and driven from the charabanc so that when it was not in use for touring purposes it became a generator of power. When a cottage scene was required wires were run into the actual cottage and the scene enacted therein, thus saving the heavy expense of erecting scenes in the studio and ensuring an absolute fidelity to Cornish conditions that could not be obtained by any other means. The results were eminently successful, but all through the film the lighting is one of the strongest points. There are some beautiful sea and sky effects which add considerably to the value of the picture. The weakest point is the acting, apart from that of Mr. George Foley. Some of the efforts in this direction are decidedly amateurish.



The Hull Daily Mail (16 February, 1922 - p.4)


Hastings and St Leonards Observer (25 March, 1922 - p.5)


     The fare at the Public Hall Cinema, near the Memorial, is always attractive and the programme to-day (Saturday) includes “The Double Event,” a very pleasing light comedy drama adapted by Kenelm Foss and featuring Lionelle Howard, Mary Odette, Louie Freear and Tom Coventry; “Miracles of the Jungle,” and Gaumont Graphic.
     On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday the programme will include George Foley in “The Lights of Home,” a fine film adapted from the popular drama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan. The story concerns Tress, the motherless daughter of old Dave Purvis, a Cornish fisherman, who falls a victim to the romantic glamour of Arthur Tredgold, an artist who is on holiday in Cornwall. Later Tredgold returns to London, promising to come back soon and marry Tress, but he does not and Tress becomes the subject of scandal amongst the villagers. The story continues with great interest. The cast includes George Foley, Jack Raymond, Frank Tennant and Nora Hayden. In support will be “The Tempest” (Robertson-Cole interest); Gaumont Graphic; and “Home, Sweet Home” (Interest).


[The front page of The Worthing Herald of 22nd April, 1922, featuring  a review of The Lights of Home at the Dome Cinema (still in business) as well as an article about Bromley Challenor’s visit to the town with When Knights Were Bold.]

[Back to Film List]



Directed by Fred Paul
Script by Paul Rooff
Produced by John Robyns for British Standard
Fred Paul Father Michael
Humberston Wright Captain MacDonnell
Sydney Folker Harry O'Malley
Mary Morton
Jock Raymond
Amy Brandon Thomas
George Turner
Clifford Desborough


The Bioscope (19 February, 1920 - p.29)

     Fred Paul is hard at work on the first of a series of productions which will be known as the Fred Paul British Standard Film productions. The subject selected is that fine drama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan, “The English Rose,” which ran for nearly a year at the Adelphi Theatre, and has since been played all over the world. Miss Amy Brandon Thomas will play the leading part, and Mr. Paul himself will play Father Michael. The cast also includes Sydney Folker, Humberstone Wright, Jack Raymond, George Turner, and May Morton.



The Bioscope (11 March, 1920 - p.126)

     As I foretold in my notes a fortnight ago, Fred Paul is now hard at work down at Ealing in the screen version of George R. Sims’s “The English Rose.” And more than that. He has been associated in the formation of a new British producing concern—British Standard Film Productions—whose managing director is Mr. John Robyns. Work on this production is now proceeding at Barker’s, and plans for extending that part of the premises already acquired are on the tapis.
     In the cast are Amy Brandon-Thomas, Sidney Folker, Humerton Wright, Jack Raymond, May Morton, and Clifford Desborough.
     Fred Paul is, of course, directing, and he has also been prevailed upon to enact the rôle of “Father Michael.” He stated that this, the first production of the new company, would be the fore-runner of many well-known works, the rights of which he has secured.



The Bioscope (18 March, 1920 - p.90)

     Fred Paul has just finished screening “The English Rose,” the old Adelphi drama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan. In the cast are Amy Brandon-Thomas (daughter of the author of Charley’s Aunt), May Morton, Sidney Folker, Humbertson Wright, Jack Raymond, Clifford Desborough, and George Turner. Fred Paul himself enacts the rôle of “Father Michael.” His next production will be “Uncle Dick’s Darling” by H. J. Bryon.


The Bioscope (1 July, 1920 - p.160)


. . .

British Standard Film Productions, Ltd.

Directors: JOHN ROBYNS (Managing Director).
Producer: FRED PAUL
Camera Expert: FRANK CADMAN.
Publicity: EDWARD EVE.

     Formed about six months ago, with John Robyns as managing director, and Fred Paul, director of productions. Their first production was “The English Rose” adapted from the famous Adelphi drama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan. The cast included Amy Brandon-Thomas (daughter of the author of “Charley’s Aunt”), Sidney Folker, Humberston Wright, Jack Raymond, George Turner, May Morton, Clifford Desborough, and Fred Paul, who reappeared in an acting capacity for the first time since “The Dop Doctor.” He also directed the picture, and is now engaged on “Uncle Dick’s Darling,” by H. J. Byron. This features Athalie Davis, a screen actress of seventeen, who, at five and a half years of age, was painted by Alan Williams, the miniaturist, as the prettiest child in England. Supporting her are Frank Dane, Humberston Wright, Violet Bebbington, George Bellamy, Ronald Power, and Sidney Folker. The interior scenes are being taken at Barker’s Studios, Ealing Green.



The Bioscope (13 December, 1923 - p.40)


Presented by: Astoria.
Directed by: Fred Paul.
Type of Production: Melodrama.
Place and Period: England; present day.


     Harry O’Malley is obliged to sell his ancestral home, which is bought by Sir Philip Kingston, a self-made man, with a beautiful daughter, Rose, with whom Harry falls in love. Captain MacDonnell, Sir Philip’s secretary, hopes to marry Rose in order to cover up his own defalcations. Sir Philip discovers his true character and dismisses him. MacDonnell shoots Sir Philip, and contrives to implicate Harry, who is arrested and found guilty by the Coroner’s Jury. MacDonnell’s accomplice makes a confession, which clears Harry. MacDonnell is arrested, and the young lovers are united.

Harry O’Malley:          SIDNEY FOLKER.
Capt. MacDonnell:      HUMBERSTON WRIGHT.
Rose Kingston:             AMY BRANDON THOMAS.
Father Michael:            FRED PAUL.

     Originally produced at the Adelphi Theatre over thirty years ago, this melodrama by George R. Sims and Robert Buchanan is a good sample of the fare popular at that theatre in the days when melodrama was at its best. It must be admitted that the piece shows signs of age, or perhaps requires something of the spirit of the late William Terriss to give it life and animation. The camera has a trick of showing up crudities of plot and construction, and the story seems a little thin and threadbare. But though the hero’s adventures are somewhat of the conventional order, and he is arrested for murder at the order of the villain, and apparently condemned to death and pardoned by a couple of village policemen, as played by Sidney Folker, he is certain to enlist the sympathies of a not too exacting audience, who will also be keenly interested in the heroine, charmingly played by Amy Brandon Thomas, and in the Father Michael of Fred Paul, the producer.
     “The English Rose” marks no new era in British film production, but will be a useful feature in many popular houses.



Dover Express (15 August, 1924 - p.6)


[Back to Film List]



LOVE IN AN ATTIC (1923) (Short)
(based on the poem, The Little Milliner)
Directed by Edwin Greenwood
Script by Eliot Stannard
Produced by Edward Godal for British & Colonial Kinematograph Company
Nina Vanna The Milliner
Russell Thorndike The Producer
Walter Tennyson The Dramatist
Format: 35mm, 547.45 m, two reels.


The Bioscope (10 May, 1923 - pp.59-60)
[Although Love In An Attic is not reviewed, the article below describes the ‘Gems of Literature’ series of which it formed a part.]


The Bioscope (20 September, 1923 - p.81)


. . .

“Gems of Literature”

Walturdaw.             Released Oct. 1, 1923
Reviewed May 10, 1923.

     Invest these interesting two-reelers with special interest by having an elocutionist declaim parts of the poem when the film is made from poetry, or give a clearly-worded synopsis of the book or play from your stage prior to the screening of the film. Try to arrange also for your orchestra to play music of the period of the films. There is something of a boom in Old English songs and characteristic melodies just now in the musical world, probably started by “The Beggar’s Opera,” and cinemas have a fine chance of taking their share of popular interest.
     Particularly if you have a week of this kind of music in between two weeks of jazz and fox-trot, you will achieve the vitally necessary variety effect.
     The main interest of these little films is the fact that they are picturisations of the well-known literary works, so that the memory of your public should be refreshed by printed extracts circulated the week prior to the coming of the film. Don’t feel that, because they are only two-reelers, they are not worth much attention. They are calculated to appeal to people who do not like the usual type of films. You can go after the better classes, even the non-cinemagoers, and endeavour to win them over to the cinema by seeing that they hear about these short films.
     Reproductions on leaflets of the pages in the firm’s synopsis containing photo block and brief story is ideal publicity material for this class of subject. Be sure and announce that they are British.



The Hull Daily Mail (12 February, 1924 - p.2)


[Back to Film List]



A Robert Buchanan Filmography - continued








The Fleshly School Controversy
Buchanan and the Press
Buchanan and the Law


The Critical Response
Harriett Jay


Site Diary
Site Search