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Traffic in Souls

1913 1h 6m Drama List
78% Tomatometer 9 Reviews 40% Audience Score 50+ Ratings White slavers force unsuspecting women to join a prostitution ring. Read More Read Less

Critics Reviews

View All (9) Critics Reviews
Variety Staff Variety Despite its choppy form, the drama moves along briskly, concluding with a fine piece of movie staging in a raid by a squad of cops on one of the vice dens, a picture conceit that shows the sides and roof of the resort, photographed obliquely from above. May 11, 2021 Full Review Globe Staff Boston Globe From first to last the play is an almost unbroken succession of exciting episodes, hairbreadth escapes and thrilling rescues. May 11, 2021 Full Review Inquirer Staff Philadelphia Inquirer These moving pictures are in many ways truly remarkable, first because of the vividness of the story unfolded and, secondly, because of the wholesome lesson that story drives home with such terrific force. May 11, 2021 Full Review George Blaisdell Moving Picture World On the dramatic side Traffic in Souls has unusual power. There are many stirring situations -- of heart interest and of suspense. The action unfolds smoothly, coherently, and always interestingly. May 11, 2021 Full Review Eagle Staff Brooklyn Daily Eagle The picture is not convincing because cheap melodrama is substituted for sordid fact. As a social document it is vicious because of its distortions and exaggerations. As entertainment it is in bad taste, because It exploits vice for profit. May 11, 2021 Full Review Motography Staff Motography There are many other big moments and worthy scenes throughout the whole seven reels. May 11, 2021 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (9) audience reviews
Dustin D Traffic in Souls is the silent-era's version of Taken. It had an intriguing plot and was a crowd pleaser. There were some early examples of freeze-frame animation and camera movement. The language of film hadn't been firmly established yet, so the abrupt cuts between locations are jarring, and the framing of most scenes adds a distance modern audiences might find disengaging. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/24/23 Full Review Audience Member Traffic in Souls is a film interesting solely for its historical value. It's one of the first feature-length American movies not based on a book or play. It was wildly successful, putting Universal Movies on the map as a major player. It purported to address the problem of forced prostitution, while chiefly benefiting from the prurient interest the subject generated and delivering nothing that could remotely be described as titillating, so in that sense, it qualifies as the first sexploitation movie. The early portion of the movie features a less mannered acting style than one is used to from movies of this era, although once the plot winds up, it quickly descends into "Woe is me!" rubbish. It's pretty much rushing to save the girl tied to the train tracks, only this time the hero is saving her before she has to have sex with someone. There are two female leads, and neither one of them made a movie after the age of 30. Matt Moore, the male lead, made movies into his late sixties. So Hollywood hasn't changed all that much (Moore, incidentally, was hilarious as the banjo-strumming Kruger in The Front Page, previously reviewed). Rated 2 out of 5 stars 12/28/15 Full Review david l As one of the very first American films ever made, the years have treated spectacularly well Traffic in Souls, a picture which is thin on characterization, but which is rather well filmed and surprisingly fast paced, especially for the time, plus its important subject matter got a needed serious treatment here. It is a century old film, but it is, against all odds, very much watchable and quite respectable even today. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member "Traffic in Souls" started the trend in Hollywood to make sexy pictures. Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars 01/21/23 Full Review Audience Member An early cinematic achievement that was a stepping stone toward classical cinema Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Audience Member 1. Moral: If you're a single girl going to NYC, you'll be forced into prostitution. (But I think Giuliani fixed this.) 2. This has as many high-tech gadgets as a James Bond film. We have finally caught up with the prostitution ring, who have something like primitive iPads. 3. There are so many fascinating details of 1913 life. Streetcars. Immigrants coming from Ellis Island (many looking right at the camera). Rooftops. Police stations. Apartments. Cars. 4. The lower down you are in the class system, the less decoration you have on your wall. 5. This movie is as far away from us in time as it was from Napoleon. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/20/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Traffic in Souls

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Cast & Crew

Movie Info

Synopsis White slavers force unsuspecting women to join a prostitution ring.
George Loane Tucker
Walter MacNamara
Release Date (DVD)
May 27, 2014
1h 6m