The Perils of Pauline (1914, Louis J. Gasnier and Donald MacKenzie), the European version, Chapter 6: The Shattered Plane

The Shattered Plane title to this chapter kind of gives things away. Is there going to be a shattering of a plane? Has it already shattered?

Villain Paul Panzer talks his ward, Pearl White, into going out to the airfield and trying to get aboard a plane. There’s going to be a race. White loves the idea, though her beau Crane Wilbur disapproves.

When Panzer and White get to the airfield, Panzer tries to bribe the pilot, who refuses. The pilot cannot, however, refuse White’s charms and agrees to let her ride along.

So then Panzer sabotages the plane (that night), presumably to kill both pilot and passenger. Panzer not having a plan when he goes out to the airfield in the first place is kind of sketchy, along with him not knowing how to sabotage a plane until he overhears the pilot talking about maintenance.

Wilbur still wants to keep White from flying; he sabotages both the household’s cars. One he just lets the gas drain as they drive, which White doesn’t seem to notice when she’s walking around the back of the car. Luckily (or unluckily), Panzer manages to find a car to go pick White up.

There are some great aerial shots from the flying planes, but it turns out to be a lackluster Pauline, even taking the serial’s tropes into account.

And when White has to call the maid to go get her a coat? It’s pretty obnoxious. Panzer shouldn’t be poorly plotting to kill her, but White seems to be an awfully snobby blue blood.

CREDITS

Directed by Louis J. Gasnier and Donald MacKenzie; screenplay by Charles W. Goddard and Basil Dickey, based on the novel by Goddard; director of photography, Arthur C. Miller; released by the Eclectic Film Company.

Starring Pearl White (Pauline), Crane Wilbur (Harry), Paul Panzer (Koerner), and Francis Carlyle (Hicks).


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