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Betsy Ross (1917)

6.0
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Revolutionary War heroine Betsy Ross finds herself in competition with her sister for the affections of a British soldier.

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Title: Betsy Ross (1917)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Betsy Griscom
John Bowers ...
Joseph Ashburn
Lillian Cook ...
Carissa Griscom
Victor Kennard ...
John Ross
Eugenie Woodward ...
Mrs. Ashburn
Kate Lester ...
Mrs. Vernon
Frank Mayo ...
Clarence Vernon
George MacQuarrie ...
Justine Cutting ...
Mrs. Griscom
Robert Forsyth ...
Samuel Griscom
Robert Cummings ...
Joel Radley
Nellie Fillmore ...
Mrs. Bass
Richard Clarke ...
Lemuel Ketch
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Storyline

Revolutionary War heroine Betsy Ross finds herself in competition with her sister for the affections of a British soldier.

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Details

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Release Date:

17 September 1917 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Not exactly enthralling, but an interesting period piece.
7 October 2008 | by (Los Angeles, California) – See all my reviews

Not being extremely familiar with the customs and ways of the 18th century, I cannot vouch for whether or not the story depicted in this film is historically accurate. However, viewed purely as an example of early story telling, it is certainly watchable, if not exactly thrilling. I watched this off of a public domain DVD (that also contains three other old movies), and the quality of the film transfer varies a bit throughout. In some places, it's jittery and in others, a bit dark and blurry, but overall, considering it's age, these are very minor details. One should be thankful when anything this old survives at all.

Alice Brady is quite likable in the title role, as are the women who play her sisters. It starts out humorously, with the girls' stern religious father scolding them for playing the piano (which I can only assume, was considered to be an "unladylike" activity among Quaker society in the 1770s). A couple of minutes later, they are seen in another room laughing and making a mockery of his tantrum. However, as the film progresses, the subject matter becomes more and more serious. While there are some slow spots in the middle, it eventually concludes with a cliffhanger, and even a trick ending.

The main problem with the version I viewed, is that the musical accompaniment, featuring a theatre organ, remains inappropriately whimsical throughout, even during a pair of scenes involving violent deaths. Although the film is listed as being a historical romantic drama, this often gave the impression that one was watching a comedy without any punchlines. So be forewarned, should you view this off of Mill Creek Entertainment's "Family Collection" DVD, you might want to consider turning the sound down.


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