Cast & Crew
Gregory Novik, an ambitious Russian peasant who is hated by his fellow villagers, enjoys his hypnotic power over women, including Inez, the wife of revolutionary leader Raff. Gregory leaves disguised as a monk, and while drinking with a secret service agent, betrays Raff, who is captured. The agent persuades Gregory to go to St. Petersburg, where Gregory becomes known as Rasputin and converts a following of prominent people to his teachings that the inhibition of physical cravings is evil. When the young Czarevitch develops an illness that doctors diagnose as incurable, Rasputin saves him, but warns that he must always stay near him. Sixteen years later, during World War I, Rasputin, who flaunts his immense power, conspires with the Germans to cripple the Russian army. After Princess Sonia repulses Rasputin's advances, he lures Raff's daughter Ilda to his room and is embracing her when a message comes from Sonia. As he searches for Sonia, Rasputin is killed by Raff and his body is dumped into the river. The Czar attempts to dissolve the Duma, but Kerensky's eloquence encourages the members to remain, and the Czar is exiled.
This film opened on September 12, 1917 at the Park Theater in New York for a ten-day run. Because of the huge crowds at the premiere, it was necessary to call out police reserves. Many of the character names in this film are not historically accurate. For information concerning other films about Rasputin, see the notes to The Fall of the Romanoffs (above).