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In San Francisco, the sportsman Kay Hoog tells to the members of a club that he has found a message in a bottle with a map from a Harvard's missing professor telling about a treasure of an Inca lost civilization still alive. He decides to go to Peru to seek the gold. However, members of the secret criminal organization "The Spiders" leaded by Lio Sha break in Kay's mansion during the night and steal the map. Kay Hoog travels to Peru, where he retrieves his map and a document about the Diamond Ship from The Spiders. Later he saves the Priestess of the Sun Naela and brings her to San Francisco. However, The Spiders kill Naela and Kay Hoog promises revenge for the death of his love. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Originally, "The Spiders" was planned as a four-part serial, and it shows. I dislike serials; they're typically ridiculous, convoluted and banal. This one is no exception. In the first part of "The Spiders", "The Golden Lake", a rich adventurer thwarts the plans of a gang of criminals--the Spiders--to steal gold from Incans. A silly love triangle ensues, with some Cowboys and Indians action. The sensationalism and exotica of it didn't entertain me.
One can legitimately trace themes from this two-part series to Lang's later, far superior work. And, the film-making is better than in other serials I've seen from this time, including "Les Vampires" (1915). In "The Spiders", the camera isn't as static, and this film is fast paced, thankfully. The tinting and lighting are adequate, too. None of that's remarkable, though. It's nearly unseemly, however, in how closely this series resembles Louis Feuillade's serials; the criminal gang dresses and behaves like those in "Les Vampires"--only the names, and to a lesser extent, the situations have changed.
For the further comments on The Spiders series, see the web pages for it.
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