Man with Two Mothers (1922)

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This comedy-drama, with its ethnic and mother love themes, was very much of its era. When Dennis O'Neill (Cullen Landis) inherits his uncle's junk business, he has to relocate from Ireland to the States. His uncle's wish is that he take care of his aunt, Delia Bryan (Laura Lavarnie), but unfortunately Delia doesn't want anything to do with Dennis's widowed mother (Mary Alden) and her old-fashioned, Irish ways. In America, Dennis pretends to put his mother on a boat back to Ireland, then sneaks her off and sets her up in an apartment near his. Then he is faced with wrestling his uncle's estate from two swindlers, dealing with one surrogate and one real mother (for example, he has to eat birthday dinner twice), and winning the heart of pretty Claire Mordaunt (Sylvia Breamer). The latter, in a way, is the most difficult, because Claire gets suspicious of the mysterious woman Dennis keeps visiting. It's finally revealed that the "other woman" is his mother, and after a good, healthy fist fight, Dennis gets control of the estate. Paul Bern -- the man behind the megaphone here -- showed quite a bit of talent as a director but later he proved to be an even better producer.

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Keywords

business, family, family-responsibilities, immigrant, mother, widow/widower