Sunday, September 21, 2014

Silent Sundays: The Perils of Pauline: The Shattered Plane (1914)

Pauline’s (Pearl White) guardian Koerner suggests to her that she should ask a famous aviator if she can go with him on one of his record breaking flights. Koerner suggests this to Pauline because he is still trying to have her killed so he can take her money. Pauline’s fiancé Harry is not happy with Koerner for his suggestion. All Harry wants to do is marry Pauline but she is constantly going off on some adventures and getting herself in trouble.
            At the airport Koerner overhears the aviator tell a technician. The aviator is not too crazy about Pauline coming around but once he sees her he agrees. Koerner pushes his luck with asking the aviator if Harry can come along but the aviator says he can only take Pauline with him. Koerner goes to his partner Hicks with the news about the wires in the plane. Hicks has someone deal with the wires.
            In the meantime Harry still does not want Pauline going on the trip. He does everything he can to stall her. He messes with one of the cars causing it to break down on the way to the airport. Fortunately for Pauline and unfortunately for Harry another car comes by and she has the driver take her to the airport.
            Pauline is late for takeoff and the aviator leaves without her. Harry shows up believing she is on the plane. Soon the plane turns around and crashes. Harry is shocked and terrified because he believes Pauline to be on the plane. Before he becomes too upset Harry runs into Pauline. The couple leaves the airport and heads home.

            Pauline was once again not really in any peril. Harry is once again a hero making Pauline late for her flight. I thought it was so cool seeing scenes of Fort Lee where Shattered Plane and all the Perils of Pauline films were made. At the time these films were made Fort Lee and the surrounding towns were all wilderness and dirt roads. Today Fort Lee is home to the George Washington Bridge and “Bridgegate” and  insane amounts of traffic. It is hard to believe that the town and the towns around it were once small backwoods places the film industry would come over and use for exteriors.