The Prussian Cur

The Prussian Cur is a 1918 American anti-German silent propaganda film produced during World War I. Now considered a lost film, it is notable for telling the story of the Crucified Soldier.

The Prussian Cur
Film still
Directed byRaoul Walsh
Produced byWilliam Fox
Written byRaoul Walsh
StarringMiriam Cooper
CinematographyRoy F. Overbaugh
Release date
  • September 1, 1918 (1918-09-01) (U.S.)
Running time
7 reels (approximately 70 minutes)
CountryUnited States
LanguageSilent (English intertitles)

The film's director, Raoul Walsh, called it his "rottenest picture ever" for its anti-German sentiment, while its star Miriam Cooper (Walsh's wife) called it the worst film in which she had ever appeared.[1]

The film was shot in Fort Lee, New Jersey, where Fox and many other early film studios in America's first motion picture industry were based at the beginning of the 20th century.[2][3][4]


As luridly described in a film magazine,[5] the Kaiser has plans to conquer the world while all of the other nations are engaged in peaceful pursuits. The Germans enter France and their U-boats work like sharks in the sea, and after many insults the RMS Lusitania is sunk, causing the United States to enter the war. Before Bernstorff (McEwen) leaves the country, he establishes a spy system headed by Otto Goltz (von der Goltz). Under his orders, German agents burn factories, wreck trains, stir up labor troubles, and interfere with American war work. Goltz marries a young American woman and brutally drives her to her death. Her sister finds her in a dying condition and takes her home to die. A young brother goes after Goltz, who is running a nest of spies where bombs are being made. Dick Gregory (Mason), an American soldier, sees Goltz on the street dressed in an officer's uniform on a day when a confidential order was given out that no officer was to wear one. Dick follows him and finds the nest of spies. Under his command the regiment wipes out the nest and Goltz while trying to escape is overtaken by the brother of the young dead woman and is killed. Meanwhile, American forces are pouring into France so fast that the Kaiser sees his dream crumbling and dies like a rat.



Like many American films of the time, The Prussian Cur was subject to cuts by city and state film censorship boards. For example, the Chicago Board of Censors required cuts, in Reel 1, of the intertitle "Kill the men and save the women for yourselves" and, Reel 8, of a German soldier taking off his coat in a bedroom.[6]

See also


  1. The Prussian Cur on IMDb
  2. Kozsarski, Richard (2004), Fort Lee: The Film Town, Rome, Italy: John Libbey Publishing -CIC srl, ISBN 0-86196-653-8
  3. "Studios and Films". Fort Lee Film Commission. Retrieved 2011-05-30.
  4. Fort Lee Film Commission (2006), Fort Lee Birthplace of the Motion Picture Industry, Arcadia Publishing, ISBN 0-7385-4501-5
  5. "Reviews: The Prussian Cur". Exhibitors Herald. New York City: Exhibitors Herald Company. 7 (11): 50. September 7, 1918.
  6. "Official Cut-Outs by the Chicago Board of Censors". Exhibitors Herald. 7 (15): 46. October 5, 1918.
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