Film: 10336

Feature Drama | 1920 | Silent | B/W


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Kismet an Arabian Night fantasy by Edward Knoblock.
This is the tale of the day of days in the life of Hajj the beggar who lived in the peaceful city of Bagdad one thousand and one years ago. Bagdad the beautiful Jewel of the Orient.
Hajj (Otis Skinnor), a beggar is awaiting morning worshippers to beg for alms. A stranger comes to worship and gives to him. The stranger is Jawan the White Sheik in search of his son who was taken away many years before by the former Caliph and has entered a promise with the priest to be charitable.
A lame man in rags comes and takes bread from Hajj. Hajj makes it clear that it is his place for begging by legacy as this was the place that a mortal enemy who took his wife and killed his son. He throws the man in rags to the floor. Nasir, the guide approaches and asks Hajj to share his takings from the stranger as they have an agreement. Hajj gives Nasir his share finding out who the stranger was – an old Sheik and any promise of finding his son he will give readily to charity.
The stranger comes out from prayer and Hajj approaches him asking for money telling him he will see his son today.
Before long Hajj realises what he has done - he has blessed Jawan, the enemy, who stole his wife and stabbed his son. Jawan throws a purse at him but Hajj says he will not take blood money. Hajj later keeps the purse with the idea of using the money to seek revenge. The guide comes and asks for his share by agreement but Hajj keeps the purse hidden. Hajj leaves the man in rags to have his begging place.
The Calliph Abudallah (Leon Bary) at his Temple with Abu Bakr, the grand wizard who tells him of danger. The Lord Chamberlain reports to them that all accounts are in order but for that of Wazir Mansur.
At his mansion Wazir Mansur receives a message and fears for his own death.
Hajj meets the daughter of his second wife.
Hajj is spotted in the market place and Wazir who is brought before the Calliph Abudallah tells that he has seen Hajj who robbed honest merchants.
Unsure and they will judge on the Koran and which line it falls on. A sword is pushed into the Koran and the line at the point of the sword is ‘Then from him shall his hand be taken’. About to sever his hand Hajj appears and talks of a white highwayman who has come to Bagdad in disguise. Hajj is not believed and will lose his right hand as a forfeit unless he kills Calliph.
The Queen of Mansurs harlem hears of a noble visitor and Hajj is taken to her. She asks him to meet her.
Hajj returns to Mansur and agrees to kill Caliph in order that he may live but Mansur has one last favour – he asks for the hand of Hajj’s daughter Marsinah Calliph is not killed. They swear on the Koran. Mansur intends to kill Hajj anyway.
Jawan is to be held in prison until word is received that he promised to be charitable to prove he is telling the truth.

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