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Engelein 1914

Engelein is a comedy of deliberately mistaken identity. If Jesta, a 17-year-old, can play the part of a 12-year-old, her family will gain a large inheritance from a rich uncle from Chicago. Her unruly “play-acting” for the uncle is preceded by an earlier incident in the film that results in Jesta being evicted from her girl’s school. Wearing a long, woman’s skirt, she climbs up a ladder and onto a thatched roof. She reaches over the top of the wall to kiss her boyfriend, who appears from the other side. However, Jesta is caught by the headmistress, and her forced descent is precipitous. Pulled downward, she reveals a great deal of a black-stockinged leg. She looks distinctly sexual as she falls into the matrimonly arms of the law, whose duty is to enforce the rules of female decorum.


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