|The Little American|
|Director:||Cecil B. DeMille|
|Producer:||Cecil B. DeMille|
|Editing:||Cecil B. DeMille|
|Released:||August 27, 1917|
|Internet Movie Database entry 0008188|
The Little American is a 1917 drama film directed by Cecil B. DeMille. The film the attack of the Germans on the French during World War I. It stars Mary Pickford as an American woman who is in love with both a German as a French soldier.
Karl Von Austreim (Jack Holt) is a subject of the German Emperor and lives in America with his German father and American mother. He notices a young lady, who is revealed to be a little American, named Angela Moore (Mary Pickford). As she is celebrating her birthday on the Fourth of July of 1914, she receives flowers from the French Count Jules De Destin (Raymond Hatton). They are interrupted by Karl, who also gives her a present. They soon battle for Angela's attention. To lose his competition, Count Jules arranges for Karl to be sent on the Imperator for Hamburg, where he will have to join his regiment. Angela is crushed when he announces he will have to leave. The next day, Angela reads in the paper the Germans and French are at war and 10,000 Germans have been killed already.
Three months pass by without having heard from Karl. Overseas, Karl is wounded in the war. Germany has its own problems when they find out about spies selling munitions to the enemy. Word spreads out all boats which is thought to be selling munitions to enemies, will be sunk. Angela happens to be on one of those boats, where she was attending a party. While the ship is sinking, passengers try to escape by jumping in the water. Angela saves herself by climbing on a floating table and begs for the attacking captains not to fire at them. She does this with success, as the captains assure her they will send patrol officers to pick them up. Although being tired, Angela is finally saved.
After weeks of ceaseless hammering from the German guns, the French Line falls back on Vangy. Angela arrives in Vangy as well to visit her aunt. She discovers her aunt is dead and is now titled The Lady of Vangy. The Old Prussians are bombing the city and Angela is suggested to flee. Angela however, is determined to stay to nurse the wounded soldiers. Meanwhile, the Germans intrude the chateau with the intention to get drunk and enjoy themselves with the young girls. A French soldier tries to help Angela escape, but she is unwilling to. He next asks her to let a French soldier spy on the Germans and inform the French with a secret hidden telephone. Angela fears for caution, but gives them permission.
The intrude of the Germans is with violence. They intent to rape Angela, who is the only person in the mansion not to be hidden. She reveals herself to be an American to save herself, but they don't believe her. Angela attempts to run away and hide as well, but is discovered by a German soldier who turns out to be Karl. Angela orders him to save the other women in the house, but Karl responds he is not in the position to give orders to his fellow Germans. Angela decides to pursue them herself to leave them alone, but has no influence on the vandalizing soldiers. She realizes there is nothing she can do. With permission to leave the mansion, she outside witnesses the assassination of the French soldiers. She is heartbroken and decides to go back in for revenge.
Angela secretly calls the French with the hidden telephone and informs them that there are three gun holders near the chateau. The French prepare themselves and attack the Germans. The Germans realize someone is giving the French information and Karl catches Angela. The fellow soldiers meanwhile are looking for the spy. Karl tries to help Angela flee, but they are caught and Angela is captured. The commander orders the soldiers to shoot Angela. Karl tries to save her, but is now ordered to be shot as well for treason. As they face their death, the French bomb the mansion. Angela and Karl both survive and try to escape the town. However, they are too weak to run and both collapse near a statue of Jesus. The next day, they are found by the French soldiers. They initially order Karl to be shot, but Angela begs them to set him free. They eventually grant her to fly back to America with Karl by her side as a German prisoner.