The likeable and carefree Grand Duke of Abacco is in dire straits. There is no money left to service the State's debt; the main creditor is looking forward to expropriating the entire Duchy...
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The likeable and carefree Grand Duke of Abacco is in dire straits. There is no money left to service the State's debt; the main creditor is looking forward to expropriating the entire Duchy. The marriage with Olga, Grand Duchess of Russia, would solve everything, but a crucial letter of hers about the engagement has been stolen. Besides, a bunch of revolutionaries and a dubious businessman have other plans regarding the Grand Duke. With the intrusion of adventurer Philipp Collins into the Grand Duke's affairs, a series of frantic chases, plots and counter-plots begins...Written by
Eduardo Casais <firstname.lastname@example.org>
While far from Murnau's best, it's silly and enjoyable.
This is a truly odd little silent film--one you'd never suspect would be directed the same man responsible for "Nosferatu"! Instead of the usual serious film for which F.W. Murnau was known, "Finances of the Grand Duke" is like the blending of a comedy with a movie serial. Though the film is a regular full-length movie of 77 minutes, it play like a serial--with chapters and TONS of action--enough for a 12-part serial! While the overall effect is not great, it is pretty good and watchable.
The film is set in the fictional island kingdom of Abacco. The Grand Duke is so deeply in debt that creditors threaten to seize his kingdom. In addition, a speculator who wants to put in a sulfur mine is willing to finance a revolution since the Grand Duke refuses to have such a blight on his island. With these dark forces conspiring to take his throne, the Grand Duke has a possible solution in the form of a marriage proposal from a rich Russian Princess--who he's never even seen! Can this all be worked out or is the kingdom to be torn from him? Tune in and see.
While the humor in the film is rarely that funny, because so much happens so quickly, the film is breezy and watchable--especially to Murnau fans who want to see everything he made--even his seemingly lesser works. Overall, not bad but not great either--more like a pleasant time-passer.
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