Returning to one of his favorite themes, crooks bilking the gullible nouveau riche, Tod Browning both co-wrote (with Waldemar Young) and directed this evocative silent melodrama starring Conway Tearle as Michael Nash, an American criminal who imports a gang of Hungarian gypsies to gain control over a fortune. The victim, Doris Merrick (Gladys Hulette), is persuaded by fake medium Zara (Aileen Pringle) to hand over her jewels to Nash. But the seance does more than raise the fake spirit of Doris' dear departed father; it also uncovers a plot by "Uncle" James (David Torrence) to take over the girl's inheritance. Saving Doris from her unscrupulous guardian, Nash and Zara renounce crime and return to Hungary. Somewhat of a disappointment in comparison with Browning's later thriller The Unholy Three (1925), The Mystic benefited from the presence of costume designer Romain de Tirtoff (aka Erté) whose extravagant black-and-white creations were luxuriously modeled by the sophisticated Aileen Pringle. … More
as Michael Nash
as Doris Merrick
as Police Inspector
as Poppa Zazarack
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