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Silks and Saddles

Silks And Saddles (John K. Wells, 1921) aka Queen of the Turf, Commonwealth Pictures, wr. John K. Wells from story by John Cosgrove, dp Al Burne; Brownie Vernon, Robert MacKinnon, John Cosgrove, John Faulkner, Tal Ordell, Evelyn Johnson, Raymond Lawrence, Gerald Harcourt, Tommy Denman, Keeaquhair; 5500 ft.

John Faulkner, left, Brownie Vernon, right

The film survives today in its entirety, following reconstruction of the shrunken negative by the National Film and Sound Archive in 1977. Several of the performances emerge forcefully and give charm to a technically smooth production. Tal Ordell plays an especially oily villain, and John Cosgrove (author of the film's story) provides pleasant comic relief as the overweight suitor. The American actress, Brownie Vernon dominates all of her scenes as a graceful and good-humoured heroine, and she provides a more coquettish version than usual of the distinctively Australian heroine who can handle horses and even a two-up game with the station hands, yet emerge demure and dainty when the social occasion arises. She will clearly make both a good mate (as 'Bobbie') and a good wife (as 'Roberta') for the manly overseer when he finally wins her hand. Pike & Cooper: 103-4.

Garry Gillard | New: 26 September, 2013 | Now: 27 November, 2019