English intertitles Release dateNovember 14, 1915 (1915-11-14) WriterThomas H. Ince (screenplay), Thomas H. Ince (story) DirectorsThomas H. Ince, Reginald Barker CinematographyJoseph H. August, Robert Newhard CastFrank Keenan (Col. Jefferson Beverly Winslow), Charles Ray (Frank Winslow), Gertrude Claire (Mrs. Elizabeth Winslow), John Gilbert (A Young Virginian (uncredited)), Patricia Palmer (Amy), Nick Cogley (A Negro Servant) Similar moviesThe Last Samurai, Gone with the Wind, The Taking of Tiger Mountain, The Killing Fields, Captain America: Civil War, Anna and the King
El cobarde 1915 usa the coward
The Coward is a 1915 American silent historical war drama film directed by Reginald Barker and produced by Thomas H. Ince. Ince also wrote the film's story and scenario with C. Gardner Sullivan. The film stars Frank Keenan and Charles Ray. John Gilbert also appears in an uncredited bit part. A copy of The Coward is preserved at the Museum of Modern Art.
Set during the American Civil War, Keenan stars as a Virginia colonel and Charles Ray as his weak-willed son. The son is forced, at gunpoint, by his father to enlist in the Confederate States Army. He is terrified by the war and deserts during a battle. The film focuses on the son's struggle to overcome his cowardice.
Frank Keenan as Col. Jefferson Beverly Winslow
Charles Ray as Frank Winslow
Gertrude Claire as Mrs. Elizabeth Winslow
Nick Cogley as A Negro Servant
Charles K. French as A Confederate Commander
Margaret Gibson as Amy
Minnie Provost as Mammy
John Gilbert as A Young Virginian (uncredited)
Bob Kortman as A Union Officer (uncredited)
Leo Willis as A Union Soldier (uncredited)
The Coward was both a critical and financial success and helped to launch Charles Ray's career.
Unusual for films of this period, the main character is not presented as a gallant Southerner who is eager to fight in the war. However, consistent with practice when the film was made, black characters were played by non-black actors in blackface. Another 1915 film, The Birth of a Nation, used whites in blackface to represent all of its major black characters, but reaction against that film's racism largely put an end to this practice in dramatic film roles, although blackface continued to be used in comedies.
The acting in the film has also been noted to have been much more naturalistic than had been common in prior silent films, with cutting and camera angles aiding the actor's use of facial expressions and pauses to convey dramatic tension.