The Mother and the Law (1919)

 |  Drama  |  18 August 1919 (USA)
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A re-edited version of the 'modern' story from Intolerance: Love's Struggle Throughout the Ages (1916).



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Cast overview, first billed only:
The Boy
The Friendly One
Vera Lewis ...
Miss Mary Jenkins
Sam De Grasse ...
Clyde E. Hopkins ...
Jenkin's Secretary
F.A. Turner ...
The Girl's Father
Walter Long ...
The Musketeer of the Town
Ralph Lewis ...
The Governor
Edward Dillon ...
Chief Detective
A.W. McClure ...
The Priest
Lloyd Ingraham ...
The Judge
William Brown ...
The Warder
Max Davidson ...
The Kindly Neighbor
Alberta Lee ...
The Wife


Two young people are made homeless by a strike. They struggle valiantly to survive their desolate situation, which grows worse as reform-minded citizens remove the couple's child from their care and the young father is falsely accused and convicted of murder. Written by Jim Beaver <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

strike | murder | marriage | slum | reform | See All (25) »


A drama of human hearts






Release Date:

18 August 1919 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Anya és törvény  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


A print of this film survives in the UCLA Film and Television Archives. See more »


Edited from Intolerance: Love's Struggle Throughout the Ages (1916) See more »

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User Reviews

Mae Marsh Gives a Bravura Performance
4 October 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

THE MOTHER AND THE LAW was a re-released version of the modern arc from Griffith's 1916 INTOLERANCE.

The film does very well as a standalone film with only a few glitches where something seems left out (odd references to things we have not seen) or where blanks were left in as the episodes were stitched together from the original film.

In any case the performances remain quite strong with Mae Marsh scoring well as "the Dear One." Even the staccato ending from the original still works as one consecutive piece with Robert Harron going to the gallows. Miriam Cooper, as "the Friendless One" has a much bigger role than I remembered and was quite beautiful. I also had forgotten the incredible closeups Griffith gives the three stars.

Oddly, one "flashback" scene remains from INTOLERANCE. In the middle of the story we get a short scene from the Nazarene arc with the adulterous woman about to be stoned (shades of Iran!).

Strong story and very well done. Quite an indictment of "uplifting" societies as well as the sociology of slums.

Co-stars include Vera Lewis, Ralph Lewis, Sam DeGrasse, Walter Long, Mary Aldon, Marguerite Marsh, Max Davidson, and Kate Bruce.

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