Produced by C. R. Macauley Photoplays; Released 11/2/19 by World Film Corp.; Director: Oliver L. Sellers; Assistant Director: Justin McCloskey; Cinematography: Jack Mackenzie; Screenplay: no screenwriter credited, but adapted from the novel by Charles Neville Buck; 6 reels Print Source: George Eastman House, Nederlands Filmmuseum
CAST: Vangie Valentine (Blossom Fulkerson), Walt Whitman (Joel Fulkerson), Bernard Durning (Turner Stacy), Winter Hall (Lone Stacy), Edwin J. Brady (Rattler Webb), Millard K. Wilson (Jerry Henderson), Lon Chaney (Kindard Powers)
SYNOPSIS: Turner Stacy, known as "Bearcat" to his friends, is a fiery young boy who lives in the Cumberland mountains of Kentucky. He falls in love with Blossom Fulkerson, the daughter of a missionary, and promises her he will give up drinking and making moonshine. One day he is driven into hiding when Revenue Officers come looking for an illegal still run by his father. When the boy returns to his home, he sees Blossom in the arms of Jerry Henderson, a railroad surveyor, and from that day on Henderson is his sworn enemy. Some of the mountain men, led by Kindard Powers, attack Henderson, mistaking him for a Revenue Officer, and he takes refuge in Blossom's cabin. He hides there overnight, thereby compromising her reputation. Bearcat saves Henderson when Powers and his men attack him again, but Henderson is fatally wounded. Thinking that Blossom has been wronged by Henderson, he forces Henderson to marry Blossom from his death bed. Henderson dies shortly after the ceremony, and Bearcat vows to kill Powers. Blossom leaves the area to become a school teacher, and after Bearcat's father is released from prison, Bearcat kills Powers in a fight. Blossom returns to the community and agrees to marry Bearcat.
"The production is replete with the atmosphere of the southern mountains, and presents interesting types of the men who inhabit them, impersonated by a competent cast headed by Bernard Durning, who plays the title role." ---Moving Picture World
"Apart from the smashing exploitation possibilities on the title of this picture the production affords most excellent entertainment...This is a well directed picture interpreted by a cast of very good types. Suspense and fast action with love and pathos are combined and it will undoubtedly register heavily with the majority and completely satisfy the minority also." --- Motion Picture News.
NOTES: A nitrate print of this film was in the possession of a private collector in Oregon, who promised to ship the film to The American Film Institute for preservation in the early 1980's. The collector procrastinated, the archive lost track of him, and the film was writen off as "lost." Then, in 1996 the collector resurfaced and the film was miraculously rediscovered, and has now been preserved. Oddly enough, legendary silent film collector John Hampton also claimed to once own a nitrate print that was destroyed when his basement flooded. The film was reissued on 4-20-28, and it may be that these later release prints are the ones that survived.
The June 20, 1919 issue of Wid's Daily reported that the film had a negative cost of $71,642.17, and noted, "and even the 17 cents shows on the screen."
© 1996,2008 Jon C. Mirsalis
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