Friday, October 10, 2008

The Little Tease

US 1913. PC: Biograph. D: D.W. Griffith. STARRING: Mae Marsh (Little Tease), W. Chrystie Miller (father), Kate Bruce (mother), Robert Harron (sweetheart), Henry B. Walthall (stranger), Viola Barry, Lionel Barrymore. A 35mm blowup from an 8mm print from Andreas Benz Collection (Neckarsulm). /16 fps/ 21 min. Original in English, with e-subtitles in Italian, grand piano: Donald Sosin. Viewed at Le Giornate del Cinema Muto, Pordenone, Cinema Verdi, 9 September 2008. - Believed lost, this DWG film has survived in 8mm form in the collection of Andreas Benz. - Russell Merritt: "Tomboyish mountain girl Little Tease has her head turned by a smooth-talking, charismatic stranger she finds wandering through the woods. The stranger persuades Little Tease to run away from home, but in the valley she discovers his true colors. In a hotel, she sees him making love to another woman, and considers shooting him. Instead she runs away and finds work in a roadhouse, where her childhood sweetheart urges her to return home. Pride keeps her at the roadhouse, but the mountain flower her sweetheart leaves behind stirs irresistible family memories. She starts up the mountain while, by degrees, her father moves out of his bitterness while reading his Bible. Softened by his reading, he opens his window to let in the sunshine, sees his daughter at prayer over her mother’s grave, and calls her back into his arms." Russell Merritt [DWG Project # 468] - A film that gravitates around the Bible, with important shots highlighting passages from the Holy Book. - It is the story of the Prodigal Daughter.

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