The Amateur Liar (1919)

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Synopsis by Janiss Garza

Sidney Drew was the uncle of the famed Barrymore siblings -- brothers Lionel and John Barrymore and sister Ethel. In the 1910s, he and his wife, Lucille McVey, billed themselves as "Mr. and Mrs. Sidney Drew" and starred in a series of two and three-reelers for Paramount. These were polite situation comedies, as opposed to the slapstick that came out of places like Mack Sennett's studios and Hal Roach's Rolin film company. This two-reeler was one of the last -- Drew died within a few days of its release. It's a simple plot: Drew plays a husband who is late meeting his wife for lunch because he has been detained by a woman who is not exactly well respected in the community. Because he doesn't want his wife to become suspicious, he lies to her and explains that he was helping out a friend of his who had been embroiled in a business disaster. This same friend shows up at the restaurant, showing no sign of being upset, and the wife immediately figures out that her husband was lying. To give him a hard time, she keeps grilling him, causing him to embellish on the lie until he is exhausted and has no choice but to confess. His good-natured wife forgives him.