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Mary Pickford is known today as the first film actress to achieve international super stardom. Funny, feisty and diminutive, she was also the first actor to have complete artistic control of her films. And because Pickford chose to work with the best directors, writers, craftsmen and editors, what incredible films they are. These three titles, newly mastered with full orchestral scores, demonstrate the star‘s commitment to excellence and the brilliant range of her acting.
Ernst Lubitsch called Sparrows “one of the eight wonders of the world” and it still ranks as a masterpiece of Gothic suspense. Deep in the Southern swamps, the Grimes family operates a baby farm where unwanted or “lost” children are cruelly underfed and overworked. When the children are threatened, Mama Mollie (Pickford), the oldest of the kids, leads her troop through an alligator-infested swamp in one of the most harrowing escapes in cinema history. This version comes from the restored tinted 35mm from the Library of Congress.
Selected to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, The Poor Little Rich Girl is the story of Gwendolyn, a lonely child who is neglected by parents who chase after wealth and social status.
In The Hoodlum, Pickford is the pampered and ill-tempered Amy Burke, who lives with her wealthy grandfather in a New York mansion. Bored with her posh surroundings, she decides to try slumming with her sociologist father in an East Side tenement, with hilarious results! This version comes from the Academy Film Archive's 35mm restoration.
The Rags & Riches Collection marks the first-ever release designed to introduce younger viewers to the pleasures of silent films. Each film includes a short intro featuring a group of kids who discover a treasure trove of old films in an attic and learn about film history in the process. They also feature a separate audio track with spoken intertitles and explanations to help them enjoy the experience even more!