Girl at Home (1917)

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This film is a good example of why Jack Pickford never came close to reaching the heights of stardom that his sister Mary did. Young Pickford plays Jimmie Dexter, who is on his way to college when his mother (Edythe Chapman) discovers that her stocks have stopped paying dividends. Jean Hilton (Vivian Martin), who has always loved Jimmie, offers to secretly stake him using her own inheritance. So Jimmie goes off to college, none the wiser, and gets tangled up with vampy cabaret singer Diana Parish (Olga Grey). She convinces him that she is in dire straits, so he writes her a check for twenty-five dollars. She ups the amount to a hundred and fifty and it bounces. A detective (Billy Elmer) comes on the scene and things look bleak for Jimmie, especially when Jean and his mother arrive to find Diana crying on his shoulder. But Diana's true nature -- and the real amount of the check -- is discovered. Still, Jimmie, who now knows how his education has been funded, is determined to prove himself a man. Eventually he does, and reunites with Jean.