The Inner Circle (1912)

A lonely widower living in the Italian quarter of the city, whose only solace since the death of his wife is his little child, is reluctantly a member of a secret society existent among his... See full summary »


D.W. Griffith


George Hennessy


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Credited cast:
Adolph Lestina Adolph Lestina ... The Widower
Jack Pickford ... The Messenger
J. Jiquel Lanoe J. Jiquel Lanoe ... The Rich Italian
Mary Pickford ... The Rich Italian's Daughter
Charles Hill Mailes ... A Gangster
Joseph McDermott Joseph McDermott ... Police Agent
Alfred Paget ... Police Agent
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Christy Cabanne Christy Cabanne ... Gang Member (as W. Christy Cabanne)
Donald Crisp
Gladys Egan
Charles Gorman Charles Gorman ... Accident Witness
Robert Harron ... Man In Crowd / Accident Witness
Mae Marsh
Baden Powell Baden Powell
Blanche Sweet


A lonely widower living in the Italian quarter of the city, whose only solace since the death of his wife is his little child, is reluctantly a member of a secret society existent among his countrymen. The active members of this society have observed with envy the success of another Italian and feel that they should share the proceeds of his industry without working for it, so to this end send the wealthy man a demand for $5,000, ostensibly to defray the expenses of their society. The rich man is defiant and consequently the society decides upon his annihilation, electing the widower to do the deed. He at first rebels against the move, but has little choice, for it is a case of the marked man or himself. Hence, off he goes on the terrible errand. In the meantime, the widower's child wanders off and is thrown down by an automobile and, though not injured, is carried into the doomed house just as the father places and lights a bomb beneath it. You may imagine the man's position when, as... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

melodrama | mafia | See All (2) »


Short | Drama







Release Date:

12 August 1912 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Biograph Company See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film has been posted online to the Library of Congress' National Screen Room. See more »

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User Reviews

La Cosa Nostra
2 October 2018 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

J. Jiquel Lanoe is a rich Italian, with a nice house and Mary Pickford for a daughter. A secret organization sends a note that unless he puts $1000 under the rose bush in his front yard, both are at risk. He goes to the police, and they put a guard on their house. While they are pursuing another man, Adolph Lestina sneaks onto the property and lights a bomb under the house. Little does he know that his own daughter, who was struck by a speeding car, has been carried into the house, where its occupants are comforting her.

We're talking about La Cosa Nostra, the Black Hand, the Mafia... whatever you choose to call it. Because these movies were popular among the poor Italian emigrants, the organization had to be given a false name.... but everyone knew what they were talking about.

Lanoe was a member of Griffith's stock company, almost invariably in bit parts. This was a rare opportunity for him to take a larger role. Although little of his work survives, he was a painter, who had been in Tahiti in the 1890s, where he may have met Gaugin. A few of his surviving canvases show Gaugin's influence.

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