The Spirit Awakened (1912)

The girl, her father and invalid mother toil to keep their small farm, which is mortgaged. The mortgage falls due, and gathering together their earnings, they find the sum not quite enough.... See full summary »


D.W. Griffith


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Credited cast:
Blanche Sweet ... The Young Woman
W. Chrystie Miller ... The Young Woman's Father
Kate Bruce ... The Young Woman's Mother
Edward Dillon ... The Christian Farmhand
Alfred Paget ... The Renegade Farmhand
Mae Marsh ... The Renegade Farmhand's Sweetheart
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
J. Jiquel Lanoe J. Jiquel Lanoe ... (as Jacque Lenor)
Charles West Charles West


The girl, her father and invalid mother toil to keep their small farm, which is mortgaged. The mortgage falls due, and gathering together their earnings, they find the sum not quite enough. On the farm are two farmhands, one a true Christian, who is the butt of the other, a renegade. The renegade imposes upon the Christian boy, regarding him to be without spirit. The boy learns of the family's need, and gives his mite, which increases their store sufficiently to pay off the mortgage. The renegade learns of the mortgage money, and, having victimized one of the young women of the village, decides to get his money and get away. It is now that the Christian boy shows his spirit and after an exciting chase and fight, succeeds in recovering the money. Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Short







Release Date:

20 June 1912 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

California, 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 »

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User Reviews

The climax is a thriller
9 December 2016 | by deickemeyerSee all my reviews

A story on a farm that happened to be mortgaged. Taking part in it are the old farmer, his invalid wife, their light-haired, young daughter, two farm hands, and a girl of the neighborhood who appears only for a moment. The chief contrast comes between the two helpers. One, the slighter, is a Christian who believes in turning the other cheek, while the bigger man is somewhat brutal, also he has the courage of his evil desires, but lacks the wisdom to have good desires. There is also a subtle contrast between the two girls. The protected, yet not wholly protected, farmer's daughter, is happy and contented in her normal life, while the other girl, called "the victim of the renegade" is one of the most pathetic figures we remember seeing. She shows lack of direction (not artistic direction, let us quickly add it); even the awkward way of fixing her hair and the queer hat deeply stir our sympathies. Such little things tell us a volume of human heart- history that lies behind them. As best she can, and most piteously, she reaches out to the brute for a little love and sympathy, a little heaven- light in a dark world. This character is a very sincere piece of work. In this picture, the producer brings these characters forward with the sole aim of making us thoroughly acquainted with them. Thus he convinces us first of all that they are real people. They have lived before the picture opened and we feel that they are going to live after it closes. All he cares for, at first, is to make us feel the contrasts, which by the way is the only way we know one person from another. They are introduced in small groups. When he has succeeded, he brings forward something that will hold the attention of all his active characters. In this case, it is a sum of money, money for the mortgage. Around this all the characters suddenly begin to react together. First he mixes the powder, then he adds fire and we have the general explosion. The climax is a thriller. In the denouement there is humor and much pleasing humanity. It is a well photographed and very desirable picture. - The Moving Picture World, July 6, 1912

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