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The Switch Tower (1913)

He was a regular boy and his father a switchman. The boy determined to be like his dad and spent his play hours around, the switch-tower. Thus at the crucial moment he was able to save his ... See full summary »

Director:

Anthony O'Sullivan

Writer:

George Hennessy (story)
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Cast

Credited cast:
Henry B. Walthall ... The Switchman
Claire McDowell ... The Switchman's Wife
Marion Emmons Marion Emmons ... The Switchman's Son
Lionel Barrymore ... First Counterfeiter
Charles West Charles West ... Second Counterfeiter
John T. Dillon John T. Dillon ... Third Counterfeiter
William A. Carroll William A. Carroll ... First Federal Agent
Frank Evans Frank Evans ... Second Federal Agent
George Beranger ... A Tramp
Anthony O'Sullivan Anthony O'Sullivan ... The Storekeeper
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Harry Carey ... (unconfirmed)
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Storyline

He was a regular boy and his father a switchman. The boy determined to be like his dad and spent his play hours around, the switch-tower. Thus at the crucial moment he was able to save his father's honor as a switchman, when the struggle between love and duty came and later to come to the aid of his parents in the hands of the desperate counterfeiters, eventually causing their capture. Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

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Plot Keywords:

train | See All (1) »

Genres:

Drama | Short

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 June 1913 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Biograph Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Let Your Child Play With Guns -- It May Save Your Life
14 April 2012 | by alonzoiii-1See all my reviews

This is a Biograph one-reeler that was not directed by Griffith, but it hardly seems to matter as his stock company and Billy Bitzer are on hand to give the production that Griffith feel. And this one is fun -- as an ornery little kid, through luck and pluck, manages to save his Mom and his Dad from a deadly bunch of counterfeiters, and in the meantime, keep the trains on his Dad's railroad running on the right track.

If those old melodramas from 1912 had been like this, the genre would not have faded away. Modern filmmakers could learn a lot just from this one reeler on how to tell (and sell) a story quickly, and still incorporate a lot of action.

Worth seeing -- it's not stodgy in the least.


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