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Little Lord Fauntleroy (1921)

Mme. de Bodamere , Rose Dione , Jack Pickford , Alfred E. Green  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Actors: Mme. de Bodamere, Rose Dione, Joseph J. Dowling, Claude Gillingwater, Colin Kenny
  • Directors: Jack Pickford, Alfred E. Green
  • Format: Color, Silent, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Image Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 1, 2005
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000777HT8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #273,754 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Fortunes change dramatically for little Cedric, a poor American boy living in 1880s New York, when he unexpectedly inherits a British fortune. He and his mother, known as "Dearest," are sent to England to live with the cold and unsentimental earl who oversees Cedric's newfound wealth. To keep his wealth, Cedric must conquer the Earl's heart and fight off an unexpected claimant to his new fortune. A highly influential film in its day, this family classic remains an extraordinarily entertaining and fascinating look at old New York and the English artistocracy. Mary Pickford exhibits her remarkable range as an actress by playing both Cedric (inspired by her brother Jack's joy of mischief and her husband Douglas Fairbanks' swagger) and his mother, the gentle and beautiful Dearest. Also on display is the enormous talent of cameraman Charles Rosher (Sunrise) who created all the double exposure shots in which mother and son appear in the same scene. One of Mary Pickford's most lavish productions, this is still considered the finest adaptation of Frances Hodgeson Burnett's classic novel.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mary was a little boy March 20, 2005
Little Lord Fauntleroy is an enjoyable Mary Pickford film. It is unusual not so much because she plays two roles, she had done that already in Stella Maris, but because she plays a boy. The story, adapted from Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic of a young American boy going to England to claim his inheritance, is well told with lots of humour and sentiment. Pickford does well in her two roles of mother and son and the way she interacts with herself on screen is a delight to watch, especially when one knows that these special effects were all done in the camera. Her acting in the part of Cedric can hardly be faulted. She throws herself, sometimes literally, into the part and does everything possible to transform herself into a little boy, but she is never truly convincing. This is not really the fault of her acting. Her mannerisms, her way of walking, her fights are all boyish, but she always looks just like Mary Pickford. In the end it has to be said that while Mary could transform herself into a little girl years younger than herself, she just could not make herself look like a little boy. She's far too beautiful and has too many curls. She remains, as always, the girl with the curls.

The black and white print on the Milestone DVD is pretty good. It seems to be complete and while there are quite a lot of scratches, this wear and tear is never really distracting. The image is clear and bright with a good amount of detail. I was generally pleased with how the film looks. The DVD has a good orchestral score by Nigel Holton, well played and appropriate to the mood of the film. As extras there are two photo galleries. Little Lord Fauntleroy may not be one of Pickford's very best films, but once you get used to Mary as a little boy, it becomes a lot of fun and essential viewing for her fans.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Ideal Introduction To Mary Pickford. February 26, 2005
The 1921 version of LITTLE LORD FAUNTLEROY was one of Mary Pickford's biggest hits and it's easy to see why. It features her in a dual role as the little lord and his mother giving her the opportunity to showcase her acting talent in two very different roles as well as letting us see the two types of parts she would play for the rest of her career. While split-screen roles had been done many times before (Pickford even did it in 1918's STELLA MARIS) seldom has it been done as well as it is here. Not only are the double exposures perfect but the perspectives used really highlight the difference between child and adult.

Mary was one of the most powerful people in Hollywood at that time and she always worked with the best technicians available. The sets are stunning, the lighting equally memorable and Charles Rosher's cinematography is in a class by itself. The direction is credited to Alfred E.Green and Mary's brother Jack (according to Mary he was the inspiration for her portrayal of Fauntleroy) but you can be sure that she did a lot of it herself without credit. Claude Gillingswater as the old Earl of Dorincourt gives a marvelous performance every bit the equal of C. Aubrey Smith and Alec Guiness in later versions. As wonderful as Mary's child performance is, I never once thought of her as a boy (I'm sure audiences in 1921 didn't either) but she definitely was the character of Fauntleroy so it really doesn't matter. Her work as the mother is just as good showing that she could play adult roles when she gave herself the opportunity.

Sadly it is that aspect of her acting which has been forgotten over the years.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A delightful and ever-popular classic March 7, 2005
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You can't go too wrong with a popular and much liked story like "Little Lord Fauntleroy" - the poor boy growing up in 19th century New York who learns he is heir to an earldom in England, and whose childlike charm and good-naturedness softens the heart of his embittered and grumpy grandfather. And who better to play the role than Mary Pickford who won the title of "America's Sweetheart" for her popular and pleasing personality, her impressive acting skills and roles that appeal to everyone. In "Little Lord Fauntleroy", Mary showcases her brilliant talent for playing children - both girls and boys - as well as her versatility by also playing the role of the little lord's mother. The camera work for these scenes - mother and little lord together - is perfect, and overall this film is faultless with sharp, clear picture quality and a most beautiful orchestral score perfectly matched to the film. The scenes of the old English castle, village and surroundings are also perfect and a pleasure to behold, but above all it's Mary Pickford's charming and charismatic portrayal of the unassuming and loving Lord Fauntleroy that makes this film a real winner. Her expressive pantomime skills really bring the role of the young Lord come to life, and you won't mind one bit that she looks much more like a girl than a young boy. Next to "Stella Maris" in which she also plays dual roles very impressively, this is the best Pickford film I've seen so far, and I'm hoping that the other Pickford releases that Milestone Films has planned for later this year will be similarly enjoyable. There are slide shows of stills and other memorabilia on this DVD as well, making it an excellent Mary Pickford edition, and one that will surely appeal to many viewers.
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