6.4/10
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9 user 4 critic

The Country Doctor (1909)

Not Rated | | Short, Drama | 8 July 1909 (USA)
While caring for his sick daughter, a doctor is called away to the sickbed of a neighbor. He finds the neighbor gravely ill, and ignores his wife's pleas to come home and care for his own daughter, who has taken a turn for the worse.

Director:

D.W. Griffith (uncredited)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Frank Powell ... Doctor Harcourt
Florence Lawrence ... Mrs. Harcourt
Gladys Egan ... Edith Harcourt - the Daughter
Kate Bruce ... The Poor Mother
Mary Pickford ... The Poor Mother's Elder Daughter
Adele DeGarde ... The Poor Mother's Sick Daughter
Rose King Rose King ... The Maid
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Storyline

In the peaceful valley of Stillwater there is sunshine. All nature smiles as we make our way up the lane, lined on each side with blossoming trees and fragrant flowers, until we come upon Doctor Harcourt, one of God's noblemen, seated on the veranda of his house with his wife and little daughter Edith. All are carefree and happy as we stroll with them through the barley fields, lanes and daisy beds. It is indeed a beautiful sight, a trinity of souls, each living in the other's being. But the fates are jealous, and there are gathering clouds to shut out the radiance of their happy existence. Little Edith is taken very ill and the doctor is at first inclined to think his wife is unduly alarmed, but upon examining the child he realizes the illness to be serious indeed, so much so that it would probably be fatal for him to leave its side until the crisis is past. While so engaged a poor woman of the village hurries to his home to enlist his services for her little girl, who she fears is ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 July 1909 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Il medico di campagna See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Biograph Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Transfer for restoration and DVD release was copied at 18 frames per second from a 35mm print which was preserved by the Museum of Modern Art's film department. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Starts slow, but builds to an effective denouement.
21 February 2006 | by Kieran_KenneySee all my reviews

With exteriors filmed in pastoral Cunnecticut and an excellent cast of Griffith's top actors (Florence Lawrence, Mary Pickford, Kate Bruce, baby Gladys Egan), The Country Doctor is still an effective dramatic work, showing a doctor's moral and emotional struggle over treating a young patient while his own daughter lies dying at home.

The family's happiness at the beginning of the film is emphasized with very long takes of the happy threesome walking down their garden path, stopping in a field to pick flowers, smiling and stretching their arms skyward with contentment. Miz Larwence chews the scenery somewhat in these first shots, her gesturing breaking the serenity of the landscape. Once the film goes indoors and she trades her white summer gown for a sober black dress, she is much more controlled. The doctor/father, Frank Powell, also uses some dated indication techniques throughout the film. The real laurels go to the two children of the film, Gladys Egan and Adele DeGarde, who both play their sick-little-girl roles superbly, with subtle, realistic emotion.

There is especially lovely cinematography and scenery in this film. Billy Bitzer's opening and closing panoramic shots of the valley are stunning. Well worth seeing for many reasons, and definitely accessible to modern viewers.


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