The Lure of the Gown (1909)

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D.W. Griffith's The Lure of the Gown was advertised by Biograph Films as "An Italian Contemporary Romance" -- with Fort Lee, New Jersey, standing in for Italy. Much of the story takes place in a fancy ballroom, where an impressionable Italian lad is wooed away from his sweetheart by a coquettish miss who's dressed in a fabulous floor-length gown. Realizing that he is more in love with the gown than with the temptress, our hero returns to his original girlfriend by film's end. So authentic-looking were the film's exterior sequences that reviewers had trouble believing it wasn't shot abroad. Charles Inslee, Florence Lawrence and Mack Sennett were among the Griffith "stock players" appearing in this half-reel drama.