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Silas Marner (1916)

Not Rated | | Short, Drama, History | 19 February 1916 (USA)
After having been wrongly accused of murder and robbery, a heretofore kindly and gregarious weaver becomes a nasty, bitter, lonely old miser.


Ernest C. Warde (as Ernest Warde)


George Eliot (novel), Philip Lonergan (scenario)


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Credited cast:
Frederick Warde ... Silas Marner
Louise Bates Louise Bates ... His sweetheart (as Louise Emerald Bates)
Morgan Jones Morgan Jones ... His supposed friend
Thomas A. Curran Thomas A. Curran ... Godfrey (as Thomas Curran)
Valda Valkyrien ... Molly (as Mademoiselle Valkyrien)
Ethel Jewett ... Nancy
Frank McNish Frank McNish ... The Squire Cass (as Frank L. McNish)
Hector Dion ... Dunstan
Arthur Rankin ... Lammeter
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Elise Jordan Elise Jordan ... Priscilla


After having been wrongly accused of murder and robbery, a heretofore kindly and gregarious weaver becomes a nasty, bitter, lonely old miser.

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Short | Drama | History


Not Rated






Release Date:

19 February 1916 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film is presumed lost. However, an incomplete copy exists at the Library of Congress. See more »


Version of Are Children to Blame? (1920) See more »

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User Reviews

Over the Top
1 October 2009 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

SILAS MARNER would be a difficult movie to film today because of the inherent spiritual and religious issues that underlie its plot. Nominally it should have been possible to do better in 1916. However, this version is pretty much played for straight melodrama, courtesy of a script by Philip Lonergan, who certainly had a taste for it as evidenced by his other work at Thanhouser.

Usually the Broadway actors who appeared in Thanhouser's movies actually had a fairly good idea of how to act on film: they would simply give their stage-style performances, but considerably toned down. At first, Frederick Warde, in the title role, begins in this manner, but as soon as Silas is in another town, embittered, he pulls out all stops. He leers at coins and wrings his hands. He grimaces continually and simply plays it like he is thinking about how he would play the villain in BLUE JEANS on its next tour in the sticks.

This overacting is a problem with all the medium shots and close-ups. The group compositions come off better. The actors are not ungenerous with each other, and Thanhouser's unnamed cameraman shows his typical skill with composition and irising and, as usual, no money was spared on sets or costumes. But they cannot make this a good picture.

Thanhouser had already passed its peak and would collapse the following year. It had already become a back number.

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