The Black Pirate

Like Keaton and Chaplin, Douglas Fairbanks took great pains with every aspect of his productions, rendering the period settings with studied precision, and directing the action (in association with the credited director) with great visual flair. His best films provide a well-balanced mix of comedy, romance, acrobatics, and spectacle. The Black Pirate is perhaps the last Fairbanks classic: it's a sophisticated swashbuckling comedy, fast-moving, colorful, and vastly entertaining. Billie Dove plays the princess-in-distress, Sam de Grasse the buccaneer villain. Originally filmed in two-color Technicolor, The Black Pirate survives today only in black-and-white.

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