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Gretchen the Greenhorn (1916)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 3 September 1916 (USA)
A kindly Dutch immigrant and her bumbling father are blackmailed by a gang of counterfeiters.

Directors:

(as C.M. Franklin), (as S.A. Franklin)

Writer:

(story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
...
...
Frank Bennett ...
Georgie Stone ...
Kate Bruce ...
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Storyline

Gretchen Van Houck is just arriving in the USA, on a ship from Holland. She joins her father, who has already spent several years in America, where he owns an engraving business. In the tenement community where the Van Houcks live, there are residents of many nationalities. Gretchen soon becomes close friends with Pietro, a popular resident, and she also takes an interest in the widow Garrity and her children. Another resident, Rogers, is more mysterious. One day Rogers tells Mr. Van Houck that he could help him get a job printing money for the government. Van Houck eagerly agrees to try, but when he finds out what Rogers is really doing, he is placed in a painful dilemma. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

widow | tenement | ship | wedding | taxi | See All (30) »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

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Release Date:

3 September 1916 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Gretchen Blunders In  »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(2004 National Film Preservation Foundation print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the films in the 3-disk boxed DVD set called "More Treasures from American Film Archives (2004)", compiled by the National Film Preservation Foundation from 5 American film archives. This film is preserved by the UCLA Film and Television Archives, has a running time of 58 minutes and an added piano score. See more »

Crazy Credits

Except for Dorothy Gish whose name appears above the title, actors were not originally credited in this movie at the start or at the end. Instead, 6 additional actors and their character names are credited in the intertitles right before they appear on-screen and are listed in the same order in the IMDb cast. All other actors, most of whom were obtained from other printed publications, are marked uncredited. See more »

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America Welcomes Dorothy Gish
4 July 2010 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Hopeful "little" Dorothy Gish (as Gretchen) sails to America, "Fresh as the tulips of her native fields and green as the greatest grass that grows" in Holland. She reunites with poor engraver papa Ralph Lewis (as Jan Van Houck). Being a D.W. Griffith heroine, Ms. Gish arrives at her new home with a duck on a leash. She and her father may be hungry, but don't worry - we never see them eating the duck. They don't have a lot, but what they've got they share with frugal factory worker widow Kate Bush, who has a brood of hungry mouths to feed. Charmed by young Georgie Stone (as Micky Garrity), Gish lets the kid take the cake.

The blond tyke will later help Gish and Mr. Lewis battle counterfeiter Eugene Palette (as Rogers). Mr. Palette wants to take advantage of Lewis' engraving skills. Gish's most significant other neighbor is caring fellow immigrant Frank Bennett (as Pietro), with whom a budding romance develops. Playing the accordion, Mr. Bennett serenades Gish with songs "sung in English with an Italian accent." Their melting pot relationship is one of this above average "Triangle" production's modern strengths.

That this print of "Gretchen the Greenhorn" was found relatively recently, in a barn, will hopefully have everyone searching for similarly placed treasures. It's also a fine print, which shows off the film's keenly dressed sets, and generous locations. An ending sequence works too, although shot entirely in close-up; presumably, the lowly-regarded movie crew couldn't find a willing church. All of this helps overcome the often-recycled plot, which appealed to the mostly immigrant population of the country at large.

"Triangle" had released sister Lillian's "Sold for Marriage" in April (with a similar immigrant plot) and Norma Talmadge's "Going Straight (with this film's basic entourage) in June. Dorothy's film may look a little better because, at the time, she was a bigger star than either Lillian or Norma. Dorothy beat them both to the "Quigley Poll" Top Ten money-making stars, appearing at #7 in 1915.

****** Gretchen the Greenhorn (9/3/16) Chester & Sidney Franklin ~ Dorothy Gish, Frank Bennett, Ralph Lewis, Georgie Stone


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