Once to Every Man (1918)

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Adapted from a novel by Larry Evans, Once to Every Man starred Jack Sherrill as Danny Bolton, a pugnacious, hard-drinking country boy. His taste for alcohol is, alas, inherited, and for a while it appears as if Danny will end up a hopeless alcoholic like his forebears. He is redeemed by the love of pretty Dryad Anderson (Mable Withee), but she deserts him when she mistakenly believes he has fallen off the wagon (actually, he is staggering and doubled over after being kicked by a horse). Disconsolately, Danny heads to the big city, where with the help of a friendly sportswriter he becomes a champion prizefighter. Achieving success, the clean-and-sober Danny returns to his home town, where he is reunited with the now-forgiving Dryad. Though essentially a drama, Once to Every Man contained a great deal of "low" slapstick comedy. The film also boasted several attractive subtitles, written and designed by magazine illustrator Frederick Pinney Earle.