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The Little American (1917)

 -  Action | Drama | History  -  12 July 1917 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 462 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 3 critic

A young American has her ship torpedoed by a German U-boat but makes it back to ancestral home in France, where she witnesses German brutality firsthand.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Angela Moore
...
Karl von Austreim
Raymond Hatton ...
Count Jules de Destin
Hobart Bosworth ...
German Colonel
Walter Long ...
German Captain
James Neill ...
Senator John Moore
...
Bobby Moore
Guy Oliver ...
Frederick von Austreim
Edythe Chapman ...
Mrs. von Austreim
Lillian Leighton ...
Angela's Great Aunt
DeWitt Jennings ...
English Barrister
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Storyline

German-American Karl and French-American Jules are in love with Angela when each returns to his country as war breaks out. She sails for France and while there is nearly raped by Karl as the Germans invade. She is later arrested for sending secret messages to Jules but Karl defends her. Both are saved from execution by the arrival of the French forces and Count Jules Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 July 1917 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Pequena Americana  »

Box Office

Budget:

$166,949 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Wallace Beery. See more »

Quotes

Angela Moore: Gentlemen - you are breaking into the home of an American citizen - I must ask you to leave!
See more »

Connections

Featured in 1914-1918 (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Strategic château
12 June 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

According to his autobiography The Little American is the film that Cecil B. DeMille wanted to make with Mary Pickford. Both were strong supporters of the Allied cause in World War I. But Adolph Zukor wanted a box office draw with a western so A Romance Of The Redwoods was done first. DeMille envisioned The Little American as part of his contribution to the propaganda war effort. And Pickford was well known for her bond tours with her husband Douglas Fairbanks.

The Little American has Mary Pickford a daughter of the a US Senator and being courted by two men, German-American Jack Holt who receives orders to return to the Fatherland for an officer's commission in the newly declared war and French diplomat Raymond Hatton similarly ordered home. Pickford's family has a château in France and she travels there to be a nurse. But her ocean liner is torpedoed like the Lusitania and she eventually gets there.

But as it turns out the château is in German occupied territory and she's asked to do a little espionage. And who do you think is among the Germans occupying, none other than Holt.

As this was a film that DeMille himself labels a contribution to the war effort a lot of it can be dismissed. Pickford was her heroic best as The Little American. Some aspects of the real life Edith Cavell story are incorporated here with a lot more happy ending.

As for the German atrocities. They'd have to wait until the next war when Hollywood couldn't make up what they did in real life.


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