6.5/10
39
5 user 1 critic

Poor Little Peppina (1916)

A little girl is kidnapped by the Mafia in revenge for her father's help in capturing one of the mobsters. She is presumed dead, but in reality is spirited away to Italy, where she is ... See full summary »

Director:

Sidney Olcott

Writer:

Kate Jordan (story)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Mary Pickford ... Peppina
Eugene O'Brien ... Hugh Carroll
Antonio Maiori Antonio Maiori ... Soldo
Ernest Torti Ernest Torti ... Pietro
Edwin Mordant Edwin Mordant ... Robert Torrens
Jack Pickford ... Beppo
Edith Shayne Edith Shayne ... Mrs. Torrens
Cesare Gravina Cesare Gravina ... Villato
William T. Carleton William T. Carleton ... Detective Chief
N. Cervi N. Cervi ... Dominica
Mrs. A. Maiori Mrs. A. Maiori ... Bianca
Francesca Guerra Francesca Guerra ... The Stoker
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Storyline

A little girl is kidnapped by the Mafia in revenge for her father's help in capturing one of the mobsters. She is presumed dead, but in reality is spirited away to Italy, where she is raised as the daughter of a kindly couple. When she is betrothed to the cruel padrone, she disguises herself as a boy and stows away to America, where she finds herself once again in the clutches of the mobster who originally kidnapped her. But this time luck and her own pluck are with her, and the tables are soon turned. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 March 1916 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Little Peppina See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mary Pickford Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in Mary Pickford: A Life on Film (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Little Mary Plays an Italian Boy
9 April 2017 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

I can think of several explanations why this movie does not seem to me a particularly good Mary Pickford. First, the copy I looked at on Youtube is 48 minutes, as opposed to its purported 7 reels; this might be why the first half of the movie seems telegraphic. Second, the director is Sidney Olcott, whose static compositions and poor direction of actors and crowds is apparent -- only Miss Pickford and her brother, Jack do particularly well. Third, every time Charlie Chaplin cut a new deal, Pickford got a raise and was cast in more and more movies. Last, Pickford was going through a phase in which she was playing non-Americans: Japanese Cio-Cio-San in MADAME BUTTERFLY; Dutch HULDA FROM Holland; and French. They did not suit her.

In any case, a small girl is in Italy with her rich American parents. She is kidnapped by the Mafia and reared by Italian peasants. After she grows up to be Mary Pickford, her parents sell her in marriage, but she runs away, disguises herself as a boy, stows away to America, runs into all the same people. Eventually things turn out all right thanks to the usual Amazing Coincidences that seem possible in a world in which there seems to be only about thirty people in all of Italy and New York State.

Miss Pickford tries hard, but seems uncomfortable with the big gestures that playing Italian required in this era; even the Italian actors in the movie don't seem to understand what their gestures mean. Her brother Jack (playing her thought-to-be brother Beppo) is good in their scenes, and Eugene O'Brien, playing Love Interest for Miss Pickford gets through his scenes without embarrassing himself. However, no one covers himself in cinematic glory.


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