The Penalty (1920)
In one of Lon Chaney's most famous roles, he plays a criminal whose legs are accidentally amputated by a doctor in a botched operation. In order to gain the power to revenge himself on the doctor, he lets nothing step in his way to becoming the leader of the San Francisco criminal underground.
as Barbary Nell
as Frisco Pete
as Dr. Ferris
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Critic Reviews for The Penalty
Demonstrates the wonder and value of pre-digital moviemmaking: For all intents and purposes, Chaney *is* a legless man in 'The Penalty,' and the film is a documentary record of this impersonation.
Famous scene of Chaney straightening twisted legs is real plus.
Somewhat interesting for historical reasons and for Chaney's memorable performance.
The Penalty is by far one of the greatest unsung achievements of über-legend Lon Chaney
The reason the film still works instead of surviving merely as a somewhat hysterical anti-communist message film is Lon Chaney's performance.
Audience Reviews for The Penalty
This movie was very predictable, but Cheney does a great job as usual in his strange role of a criminal kingpin without legs. The romantic part of it was good too, although sometimes unintentionally funny. But then the ending was really very sad. Overall it was pretty good, but it could have been better.More
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