1925 Sally of the Sawdust Torrent Download Online

★ 7.0 (332 votes)
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Judge Foster throws his daughter out because she married a circus man. She leaves her baby girl with Prof. McGargle before she dies. Years later Sally is a dancer with whom Peyton, a son of... See full summary » view Sally of the Sawdust on imdb view Sally of the Sawdust on wikipedia

Judge Foster throws his daughter out because she married a circus man. She leaves her baby girl with Prof. McGargle before she dies. Years later Sally is a dancer with whom Peyton, a son of Judge Foster's friend, falls in love. When Sally is arrested McGargle proves her real parentage. Written byEd Stephan

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IMDb Review 1:

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

Well done melodrama that tells the story of Sally, tomboy dancer in the circus, raised by sideshow performer McGargle (played by W.C. Fields), he of the top hat, little mustache, checkered pants, and proficiency as juggler, pickpocket, and runner of carnival con games like Three Card Monte and the Old Shell Game. McGargle has raised Sally, who worships him as her "real father" since Sally's mother (kicked out of her home by her father, a judge, when she married a "circus man") died and left Sally orphaned. Sally is feisty and loyal to McGargle no matter what he gets up to - but McGargle seems to feel a bit of guilt over keeping her in the circus instead of with her own family all these years. When they end up performing in a carnival in the town where her wealthy grandparents live, McGargle uses the opportunity to "investigate" Sally's real family, with the idea that he may restore her to them. But grandfather the judge takes an immediate disliking to Sally 'cause he doesn't like a "show girl" - what a stern, narrow-minded man he is, a real piece of work that guy! And meanwhile Sally is busy being pursued by a handsome and rich young man, son of the man who helped grandpa get his riches.

This is a very good film with a few laughs here and there and a sort of odd editing style (I don't know how to describe this other than it shows long shots, then sort of jumps back a few seconds or changes angle suddenly as a close up is shown). Carol Dempster, who plays Sally, is delightful here - quite cute and comical in her performance. W.C. Fields, even without his famous voice, is very funny - just the way he moves and his amusing, comical reactions to things (like a small dog seen in one funny scene), we even see him juggling briefly in this. I love the few peeks at the old-fashioned circus and carnival that is shown here. The print of this featured on the DVD is very nice looking, tinted a light sepia tone, and the piano score for this is really excellent, performed by Philip Carli based on the original cue sheets.

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

IMDb Review 2:

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

From a modern prospective, this is a most underwhelming film. Carol Dempster (as Sally) would seem, athleticism being one of her strengths, to be a natural choice to play a circus performer; she is, however, mostly unremarkable. W.C. Fields (as Professor McGargle) is more graceful; however, without his distinctive voice, he is somewhat disappointing. And, Alfred Lunt (as Peyton Lennox), known for his brilliant stage presence, is difficult to appreciate. Of the three, Mr. Fields is the most watchable.

The breathtaking beauty of earlier D.W. Griffith-directed films is noticeably absent. While some of the shots are lovely, nothing equals the artfulness evident throughout many past Griffith efforts. "Sally of the Sawdust" is beautifully preserved (if only all Griffith prints were as well preserved); and, it is an enjoyable comedy (certainly more so in 1925). It was adapted from Dorothy Donnelly's popular play "Poppy" (1923), with Madge Kennedy and W.C. Fields. It was re-filmed as "Poppy" (1936), with Rochelle Hudson and W.C. Fields. Norma Talmadge's popular film was an altogether different "Poppy" (1917), and did not co-star W.C. Fields.

***** Sally of the Sawdust (8/2/25) D.W. Griffith ~ Carol Dempster, W.C. Fields, Alfred Lunt

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

IMDb Review 3:

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

Chaplin-esquire comedy/melodrama directed by D. W. Griffith starring Carol Dempster as a plucky orphan raised on the road by a sideshow hustler (W. C. Fields) without knowing she is the granddaughter of a rich New England family. The only real attraction of this film is the chance to see a young, fit W. C. Fields in the early version of his likable-hustler persona. There are some cool juggling scenes, and some big-circus scenes that are nice but not worth going out of your way for.

Everything else is a couple beats off. Griffith's strength is in melodrama and social commentary, but here he bogs down in a bad version of of slapstick, forcing Fields to imitate Chaplin in a way that detracts from our enjoyment of Fields being Fields.

Griffith also cast his generally untalented girlfriend-at-the-time Carol Dempster in a role she was not equal to. She needs to carry the whole film and can't. With Fields we miss too much by not hearing his voice.

Then there's the length which should be shorter by a good twenty minutes given the reliance on slapstick and the simplicity of the plot. So for Griffith you're better off with his earlier work, and with Fields you want his later work, and for mid-20's slapstick you want to stick to Chaplin, Keaton, Lloyd, Charley Chase and Harry Langdon.

Sally of the Sawdust torrent.

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