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Magic Sword - A Mediaeval Mystery, The (1901)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

(This synopsis is of the incomplete print held in the National Film and Television Archive)

On a moonlit rampart, a knight talks to a beautiful damsel. An apparition appears, and the knight goes to examine it. While his back is turned, a witch appears and attempts to abduct the damsel. The knight stops her in time, but she escapes on a broomstick. As he approaches the apparition once more, an ogre appears over the battlements and stretches a hand towards the damsel and snatches her away. The knight, left alone, is distraught.

Suddenly, a fairy appears on the wall behind him and taps him on the shoulder with a sword. She indicates that he should take the sword and go after his damsel, and he leaves in pursuit.

The witch drags the damsel into her cave, and casts a spell to make her resemble a witch when she hears the knight approaching. He strikes the first witch, who turns into a young woman, who in turn causes a winged head to float out of a cauldron. An ogre's head appears and blows smoke towards the knight. The knight strikes at the head of the ogre, which turns into a giant skull. The knight tries to hit two ghosts, which float forward and disappear.

Two young women remain: one the witch, the other the damsel in disguise, who pleads before the knight. He strikes at her with his sword, transforming her back into her real form. The couple embrace. The good fairy appears and turns the witch into a roll of carpet. It unrolls, and the knight, damsel and fairy walk onto it. The carpet takes off and floats into the sky.

In the castle grounds, the fairy appears on top of a banqueting table, where the knight and damsel are dining with friends.