The Birth of a Nation 1915

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The Stoneman family finds its friendship with the Camerons affected by the Civil War, both fighting in opposite armies. The development of the war in their lives plays through to Lincoln’s assassination and the birth of the Ku Klux Klan.

Director: D.W. Griffith
Writers: Thomas Dixon Jr. (adapted from his novel: “The Clansman: An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan”) (as Thomas F. Dixon Jr.), Thomas Dixon Jr. (play) (as Thomas F. Dixon Jr.) |
Stars: Lillian Gish, Mae Marsh, Henry B. Walthall




The Confession 1920

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Henry Walthall plays a priest who is duty bound to keep secret a terrible confession in this melodramatic thriller. Father Bartlett (Walthall) is concerned about his brother, Tom (Francis McDonald), a rowdy young man who drinks too much. Tom gets himself in trouble on the night he is out drinking with Jimmie Creighton (Barney Furey), the brother of his sweetheart, Rose (Margaret Landis). When Jimmie tells Tom that he has had enough to drink, it causes an argument and the two men come to blows outside the saloon. Tom drops his gun, but it is picked up by Joseph Dumont (William Clifford), who shoots Jimmie because he had wronged his sister. Dumont goes to Father Bartlett with this confession. Father Bartlett holds to the sanctity of the confessional, even though Tom is arrested for the crime, convicted, and sentenced to die. Although Father Bartlett prefers to leave the matter in the hands of a “greater judge,” Tom is not so willing, and he escapes. He is found in the Canadian Northwest and brought back to be hung. Father Bartlett saves Dumont from drowning and convinces him to come clean. Meanwhile, Rose and Tom’s mother (Margaret McWade) have begged for a pardon from the governor, to no avail. Father Bartlett and Dumont finally show up, but Dumont drops dead before he can reveal the truth. But just before the trap springs on Tom, a confession is found in Dumont’s pocket….

Director: Bertram Bracken
Writers: Hal Reid (play), Franklin Hall (as Franklyn Hall)

Production Co: National Film Corporation of America
Stars: Henry B. Walthall, Francis McDonald, William Clifford

The House with Closed Shutters 1910

the house with closedshutters


During the Civil War a young soldier loses his nerve in battle and runs away to his home to hide; his sister puts on his uniform, takes her brother’s place in the battle, and is killed. Their mother, not wanting the shameful truth to become known, closes all the shutters (hence the film’s title) and keeps her son’s presence a secret for many years, though two boyhood chums stumble upon the truth…

—Peter W. Many, Jr. (PMSusana)

Director: D. W. Griffith
Screenplay: Emmett C. Hall
Production company: Biograph Company
Cinematography: Billy Bitzer

Stars: Henry B. Walthall, Grace Henderson, Dorothy West


Love Among the Roses 1910

Love among the roses
B&W : One reel / 983 feet
Directed by D.W. Griffith

Cast: Henry B. Walthall, Marion Leonard, Dorothy West, Arthur Johnson, Mary Pickford, Kate Bruce, Charles H. West, Alfred Paget, Francis J. Grandon

Biograph Company production; distributed by Biograph Company. / Cinematography by G.W. Bitzer and Arthur Marvin. / © 12 May 1910 by Biograph Company [J141266]. Released 9 May 1910. / Standard 35mm spherical 1.33:1 format.


Survival status: Prints exist in the Library of Congress film archive (paper print collection) [35mm paper positive]; and in the Mary Pickford Institute for Film Education film collection [35mm duplicate negatives].

Current rights holder: Public domain.

Listing updated: 19 September 2007.

References: Barry-Griffith p. 42; Eyman-Pickford p. 325; Spehr-American p. 2 : Website-AFI; Website-Legacy; Website-Pickford.

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The Scarlet Letter 1926

The Scarlett letter

7.8/10 IMDb
93% Rotten Tomatoes
In Puritan New England, Hester Prynne (Lillian Gish) marries Roger Chillingsworth (Henry B. Walthall) at the behest of her father. When Roger is away, Hester forms a bond with the sensitive Rev. Arthur Dimmesdale (Lars Hanson). Later, when Hester gives birth to a daughter, people in the village suspect that Roger is not the father and force Hester to wear a letter A for adultery until she reveals the father of her child. Arthur, meanwhile, is overcome by guilt and decides to take action.

Director: Victor Sjöström
Screenplay: Frances Marion
Distributor: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Music composed by: William Axt, David Mendoza, Lisa Anne Miller, Mark Northam

Stars: Lillian Gish, Lars Hanson, Henry B. Walthall

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The Avenging Conscience 1914

The Avenging consience

Nightmarish visions plague a young man (Henry B. Walthall) who murdered his awful uncle (Spottiswoode Aitken) to clear the way for a love affair.
Initial release: 1914
Director: D. W. Griffith
Screenplay: D. W. Griffith
Music composed by: Samuel Roxy Rothafel
Story by: Edgar Allan Poe

Stars: Henry B. Walthall, Spottiswoode Aitken, Blanche Sweet


Judith of Bethulia 1914

Judith of Bethulia

7.4/10 · IMDb
In seventh century B.C., the Assyrians are storming the walls of the Jewish city of Bethulia, leaving its people frightened and ready to hand their homes over to the invaders. As the Assyrians close in, the citizens of Bethulia are cut off from the outside world, and they begin to starve.
Initial release: March 8, 1914
Directors: D. W. Griffith, Christy Cabanne
Story by: Thomas Bailey Aldrich
Screenplay: Thomas Bailey Aldrich
Production company: Biograph Company
Stars: Blanche Sweet, Henry B. Walthall, Mae Marsh, Lillian Gish