Throughout 1909, both Edison and Vitagraph offered competing, multi-part versions of Victor Hugo's Les Miserables. The third entry in the Vitagraph series was Fantine, named after its leading character. Struggling to support her out-of-wedlock daughter Cosette, Fantine works at the provincial factory owned by ex-convict Jean Valjean. Unjustly fired from her job, Fantine is reduced to prostitution, but the compassionate Valjean saves her from prison. Still believing (wrongly) that Valjean was responsible for her downfall, Fantine turns her former employer over to relentless Inspector Javert, who has long pursued Valjean for violating his parole. Though the film ends unhappily, those familiar with the original novel could take heart in the fact that Valjean would eventually emerge triumphant.
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