San Pedro News Pilot, Volume 11, Number 172, 19 April 1924
Harmonizing Prologue Arranged by the California for Lillian Gish Triumph, The White Sister,” Filmed in Italy
“The White Sister,” Lillian Gish’s greatest triumph, opens for a week’s engagement at the California Theatre Easter Sunday with an especially arranged program with musical selections appropriate for Easter. With a miniature Holy City prologue and vocal selections, “Ava Marie” and “The Holy City,” by Mrs. Eugene R. Whitney, who has appeared in Grauman’s and other Los Angeles theatres, the program promises to be a treat to local theatre goers.
The story was taken from the famous novel by E. Marion Crawford and screened entirely in Italy and northern Africa. Rome, Naples, Sorrento, Tivoli, and even Mt. Vesuvius were some of the “locations” used. Besides Miss Gish to interpret the thrilling story, the crust includes Ronald Colman, a newcomer to the screen who has scored a sensational success; J. Barney Sherry, a motion picture pioneer: Gail Kane, heroine of many Broadway successes, and a thousand others drawn from the ranks of European players.
“The White Sister” tells the story of Angela Chiarmonte, daughter of an Italian prince, who is made penniless because of an intrigue of her older sister. The only thing left to sustain her is her love for Captain Giovanni Severi, of the Italian army. For a time she is happy, but he is called to Africa on a military expedition, and Angela is left to take up the life of a governess.
Then she receives word ho has been killed by the Arabs. Stunned by the blow, Angela is driven , frantic, and In order to find some peace of mind and a definite place in life, she takes the vows of a nun. Shortly after this Giovanni, who has merely been hold prisoner by Arabs, escapes and returns to Rome.
How Sister Angela solves the problem of choosing between her great earthly love and her heavenly vows supplies the dramatic situation that leads up to the powerful climax. “The White Sister” has been called the artistic triumph of the present film season.
Miss Gish has never appeared to better advantage, and her restrained conception of the difficult role of Sister Angela stands at the top of her many famous characterizations. Those who recall her in “The Birth of a Nation,” “Way Down East,” “Hearts of the World,” and “Orphans of the Storm,” will, it is promised; be delighted still further by her versatility and the depth of her playing in her latest effort.
Because of the unusual length of the photodrama and the time required in staging the colorful prologue, only two shows will be given each day. starting at 2:30 in the afternoon and 8:15 in the evening.
Lillian Gish as ‘The White Sister”
San Pedro News Pilot – April 1924