John Howard Payne at his most miserable point in life, writes a song which becomes popular and inspires other people at some point in their lives.



(as Harry E. Aitken),


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Payne's Mother
Payne's Sweetheart
Sister of Payne's Sweetheart
Fay Tincher ...
The Worldly Woman
Apple Pie Mary Smith
Spottiswoode Aitken ...
James Smith - Mary's Father
The Eastener, Robert Winthrop
The Fiancee
The Mother
The Mother's Son
James Kirkwood ...
The Mother's Son
The Mother's Half-Wit Son
Fred Burns ...
The Sheriff
Courtenay Foote ...
The Husband


John Howard Payne leaves home and begins a career in the theater. Despite encouragement from his mother and his sweetheart, Payne begins to lead a life of dissolute habits, and this soon leads to ruin and misery. In deep despair, he thinks of better days, and writes a song that later provides inspiration to several others in their own times of need. Written by Snow Leopard

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Plot Keywords:

allegory | See All (1) »







Release Date:

17 May 1914 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mother Love  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Released in two parts of three reels each. See more »

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User Reviews

Fine Performances Make It Worth Viewing
5 September 2010 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Home, Sweet Home (1914)

** 1/2 (out of 4)

Interesting, if not totally successful, drama from Griffith tells four different stories with the later three being wrapped around John Howard Payne's song Home, Sweet Home. The film starts off with Payne (Henry B. Walthall) leaving his mother and sweetheart (Lillian Gish) to find fame but ends up in a world of depression only to die alone but first writing a song that would become famous much later. In the second story a man (Robert Harron) falls in love with a woman (Mae Marsh) but gets a chance to go out West. The third story deals with two brothers (one played by Donald Crisp) who hate one another and try to do each other off. The fourth story has a wife (Blanche Sweet) being tempted to leave her husband for a man with more money. This Griffith film clocks in at 55-minutes but it really doesn't feel like a feature but instead just four shorts thrown together. I must admit that the director did a very good job at connecting all three "separate" stories to the song from the first one. I thought Griffith did a pretty good job at building the stories up but all of them vary in quality. The opening has a strong performance by Walthall and this is probably the best of the group. Gish is also quite strong as she and Walthall get some nice scenes together. The story involving the man going out West is also a good one thanks in large part to the terrific performance by Harron. The story with the two brothers is so over-dramatic that you can't help but roll your eyes. I thought this was without question the weakest story. The final one is the shortest but it's always nice to see Sweet. We even get a prologue that features Walthall being dragged to Hell by some evil forces only to have an angel (played by Lillian Gish) to try rescue him. As you can tell, this film features a terrific cast of Griffith's regulars and we also get Dorothy Gish and Jack Pickford. Seeing such a large cast in a 55-minute movie is certainly a plus but one wishes the final two stories had been written just a tad bit better. With that said, fans of Griffith or the cast will find enough here to make this worth viewing at least once.

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