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The Ex-Convict1904

  • 2.8
An uncredited but quite obvious adaptation of a well-known vaudeville piece, Number 973, by Robert Hilliard and Edwin Holland. Starting from the Hilliard-Holland one-act playlet, Porter visualized the storyline into a total of eight scenes. Unlike UNCLE TOM'S CABIN, THE EX-CONVICT was not filmed theater but an adaptation that took advantage of the filmmaker's ability to place a scene in an appropriate location (outside a store, home, or factory, and on the street) and to move quickly from one setting to the next. The naturalistic locales and the accelerated pace heightened the emotional intensity of the viewer's reaction to the pathetic story, achieving a level of realism impossible on the stage. In the process of adaptation, Porter also added important new elements, notably the ex-convict's family.

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