Either by accident or design, most of the productions of the Balboa company were set along the seacoast of California. In the three-reel The Human Soul, a Spaniard, newly settled in California with his wife and daughter, takes up photography as a hobby. When his wife falls mortally ill, the protagonist becomes obsessed with the notion that he will be able to snap a picture of the woman's soul as it leaves the body. Amazingly, he manages to do just that, but before he can deliver proof of this phenomenon, he himself is killed in a freak accident. Sixteen years later, the man's grown-up daughter is on the verge of marriage, but a villainous interloper steals her away from her bridegroom. The sudden rediscovery of the photo containing her mother's immortal soul causes the girl to renounce the villain and return to her true love at film's end -- though just how the photo manages to accomplish all this is never fully explained.
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