A tough slum girl faces a crisis of the heart when the boy she loves is accused of shooting her cop father. Her brother stalks the accused slayer and finally shoots him down in the street. ... See full summary »
A tough slum girl faces a crisis of the heart when the boy she loves is accused of shooting her cop father. Her brother stalks the accused slayer and finally shoots him down in the street. Mary rushes to the hospital and offers her blood for a life-saving transfusion, even though she thinks she'll die. Written by
While there is not much to "Little Annie Rooney" aside from the way that it showcases Mary Pickford's many talents, that's not a bad focus for a movie to have. The story does seem to be planned almost entirely with that goal in mind, as most of the other characters are not developed very much, and most of the plot likewise comes back to the ways that events affect Annie. Of course, Pickford is more than up to carrying the load, and while this picture has to rank a little lower than a good number of her other movies that have more depth to them, it's still worthwhile.
Through the course of the story, Annie finds herself in numerous kinds of situations, and several sides of her character come out. She has a tomboyish, boisterous side, yet she can plead with her father on behalf of a misunderstood friend. The scene where she prepares her father's birthday party could very easily have become unbearably cloying or melodramatic, yet she handles it very well, making use of the best possibilities available rather than resorting to cheap sentiment. (In that particular scene, a couple of creative camera shots also help it to work.)
There are very few actresses, especially in the present, who could make so many different things work believably and without undue emoting. While much of the movie is simple and sometimes even a bit contrived, It's still worth seeing as one of many chances to see such a fine actress at work.
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