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Marrying Money (1915)

Marrying Money (1915) World Film Corp.; A Schubert Feature. Distributor: World Film Corporation. Director: James Young. Assistant Director: Edwin L. Hollywood. Scenario, James Young. Camera, Harry Keepers. Cast: Clara Kimball Young, Ina Brooks, Chester Barnett, William W. Jefferson, Winthrop Chamberlain, Cyril Chadwyck, Alice Gordon, E.M. Kimball. 5 reels. Re-released as Marriage a la Carte. This film appears to be LOST

This was a rare comedy for Young in this period of her career, with a plot that sounds as if it could have come from one of her Vitagraph two reelers. It was reissued under the title Marriage a la Carte in December 1916 or January 1917 with new titles. It should not be confused with the 1919 Bryant Washburn and Mildred Davis film All Wrong, which was apparently cut down and reissued under the same title. The Internet Movie Database mistakenly lists it as a 1916 film also directed by James Young (it is actually directed by William Worthington). The latter film does exist, and is an amusing comedy with no plot elements in common with the Young film.

Lobby Cards

This set of lobby cards was produced for the 1916/17 edited reissue of the film under the title Marriage a la Carte. Click on the thumbnails for a larger view--they are slightly cropped.

Reviews from Moving Picture World

Reviews from Moving Picture World

August 7, 1915

"Marrying Money"
Excellent Comedy Picture is Produced by the World Film Corporation With Clara Kimball Young
Reviewed by Lynde Denig

"Marrying Money" may be placed among the best of the recent stage comedies that have found their way into pictures. Director James Young, of the World Film Corporation, had a good story to begin with and he amplified it admirably, bringing in many incidental bits of business that combine the elements of freshness and humor. And to make the most of the incidents arising from the plot of "Marrying Money," he had in Clara Kimball Young one of the few actresses whose gifts are such that she may turn from drama to comedy and score equally in either sphere. A more fortunate combination of story, star and production is seldom met in a feature offering.

[Photo omitted--Ms. Young fallen on the ground in front of a group of smiling girls]

The main thread of the play, written by Washington Pezet and Bertram Marburgh, has been followed with sufficient accuracy; but the scenes likely to be best remembered by an audience are due to the ingenuity of Director Young and the expressive acting of Miss Young, who handles subtle comedy with great adroitness. She makes Mildred Niles a young woman of charm and spirit, and what is more unusual in photoplay heroines, blesses her with an obvious sense of humor. Chester Barnett, William W. Jefferson and Winthrop Chamberlain are others in the cast that enters whole-heartedly into the spirit of the comedy action.

It is to the credit of the director that he avoided conventional methods in making his comedy scenes, and evidently aimed to close each reel with something of a climax, such as one expects to find on the stage. Many of the scenes are laid on or in the neighborhood of a beautiful estate that furnishes just the atmosphere needed for a fashionable hotel. It is here that Mildred Niles meets Ted Vandeveer, each believing the other to be wealthy. The story keeps building up a thoroughly humorous situation in which the couple elope, followed by the most antiquated of automobiles. After an expensive honeymoon they discover that their combined resources are insufficient to meet the hotel bill and are unable to leave until Vandeveer receives an unexpected fortune. The closing scene, showing the happy couple in an automobile drawn across a railroad track and blocking a train, is capital.

August 7, 1915

MARRYING MONEY. (Schubert, Five Parts--July 26). Theodore Vandeveer and James Sweetney are two young lawyers without clients. When they are at their lowest ebb, Theodore Vandeveer gets a notice that he is one of the heirs to his rich uncle's estate. He has a rich cousin, Archie, who is also named as an heir. Theodore and Sweeney pay their creditors and find that they still have $700 left. They determine, then, to go to Rockville, a fashionable summer resort. They arrive at Rockville and apply for rooms at the hotel. They find that a magnificent suite has already been engaged by Cousin Archie and his mother, who have not yet arrived. The hotel clerk, believing that Theodore is to be in Archie's party, gives Theodore and Sweeney part of the suite. This fact causes everybody in Rockville to believe that Theodore is rich and, therefore, the ambitious mothers of the pretty girls at Rockville consider him a great catch.

Among the girls at the hotel is Mildred Niles. She is the daughter of "The King of Wall Street." Mildred and Theodore are immediately drawn to each other, and Mrs. Niles looks with favor on Theodore. Meanwhile "The King of Wall Street" is engaged in some disastrous speculation in New York. Another suitor of Mildred's is a Count, whom Mildred's mother also likes because of his title.

Sweeney, when he sees how matters stand between Theodore and Mildred, urges Theodore to elope with her. Sweeney is in a particular hurry, as the cash is fast dwindling. Matters go from bad to worse in Wall Street with Mr. Niles and finally he loses every cent. He comes to Rockville to break the news to his wife. She is prostrated. By this time, Mildred and Theodore have become engaged.

When Mrs. Niles hears of her husband's failure she insists on Mildred's eloping with Theodore before the news is made public. So it happens that Mildred and Theodore elope in Mr. Niles' car, each having a false impression of the other.

By this time Theodore has no money left. He confesses to Mildred and she confesses to him. They are in a quandary as to how they will be able to live when the rich uncle's lawyer arrives and tells Theodore that there was a secret codicil to the will saying that in the event of Theodore's marriage he should receive one million dollars. But this fact was to be a secret until after marriage, so that no woman would marry Theodore for his money

December 30, 1916

"Marriage a la Carte"
Laughable Five-Reel Farce Featuring Clara Kimball Young
Reissued by World--Produced by Peerless.
Reviewed by Ben H. Grimm.

The first duty of a motion picture is to entertain, and that duty is carried out to the letter in "Marriage a la Carte," a five-reel farce to be reissued by the World Film corporation. The film was produced some time ago by the Peerless Studios from the play "Marrying Money," by Bertram Marburgh and Washington Pezet. Clara Kimball Young is seen in a role which gives her many opportunities to "get over" humorous situations. No mental effort whatever is required to follow the story, whose only aim is to amuse. There is hardly a comedy situation in the pictureplay that has not been used, perhaps a little differently, before or since, but nevertheless the film is crowded with laughs.

Re-edited, and with new illuminated titles which in no small degree add to the mirth of the story itself, "Marriage a la Carte" should be welcomed by exhibitors, who would lighten somewhat the procession of more heavy dramatic subjects.

The story concerns Mary Niles (Miss Young), daughter of a rich broker, and Theodore Vandeveer, a penniless young relative of a millionaire. Love springs up between them, Mary thinking Theodore a wealthy young clubman, and Theodore believing Mary to be the daughter of the wealthiest man on "The Street." But Mary's father has lost her fortune. Each believing the other wealthy, the young people elope. Things are straightened out happily when a codicil to Theodore's uncle's will provides that he receive $1,000,000 if he marries.

Chester Barnett is cast as Theodore. Others in the cast are Winthrop Chamberlain, William W. Jefferson, Cyril Chadwick, Alice Gordon, Ina Brooks and E.M. Kimball. Directed by James Young.

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Last revised October 13, 2005