Kaiser's Finish

Kaiser's Finish
Directed byJohn Josseph Harvey
Story byJohn Joseph Harvey
Clifford P. Saum
Produced bySam Warner
StarringEarl Schenck, Claire Whitney, and Percy Standing
CinematographyRial Schellinger
Edited byWilliam Nigh
Distributed byState Rights[1]
Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date
November 2, 1918
Running time
6–8 reels[1]
CountryUnited States

Kaiser's Finish is a 1918 American silent World War I drama film, directed by John Joseph Harvey.[2] It stars Earl Schenck, Claire Whitney, and Percy Standing. The film contained newsreel footage of Kaiser Wilhelm and the Crown Prince Wilhelm as well as actual warfare scenes.


In pre-World War I Germany, Kaiser Wilhelm (Louis Dean) fathers a number of illegitimate children and sends them to various parts of the world to be reared by his loyal agents. Under the guardianship of Dr. Carl Von Strumpf (Fred G. Hearn), one of these children, Robert Busch (Earl Schenck), grows up believing that he is the son of wealthy German-American Richard Busch (Percy Standing), but in reality, Strumpf and Busch are servants of the Kaiser. When the United States declares war on Germany, Robert expresses his earnest desire to enlist in the American army, much to the delight of his patriotic sister Emily (Claire Whitney). Before he can do so, however, Strumpf tells Robert the secret of his parentage, believing that the young man now will be eager to fight for Germany's cause. Robert feigns enthusiasm but secretly offers his services to the U.S. government, and with the passport provided him by the Pan-German league, he goes to Germany and kills the crown prince (also played by Schenck). Next, he shoots the Kaiser and blows up the entire palace, thus sacrificing his life for the principles of democracy.


Preservation status[]

This film is now lost, as no copies are known to exist. In the late 1940s and 1950s, Warner Bros. destroyed many of its negatives due to nitrate film decomposition. Studio records indicate that the negative of filmography pre-1931 was marked "Junked 12/27/48" (December 27, 1948). No copies of Kaiser's Finish are known to exist.


  1. ^ a b c Kaiser's Finish at the American Film Institute Catalog
  2. ^ Langman, Larry (1 January 1998). American Film Cycles: The Silent Era. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 268. ISBN 978-0-313-30657-0.

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