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The Children in the House (1916)

The Children in the House (1916) Fine Arts/Triangle. Directed by Chester and Sidney Franklin. Scenario by Roy Somerville. Camera by F.B.Good. Cast: Norma Talmadge, Alice Rae, Jewel Carmen, William Hinckley, W.E. Lawrence. George Pearce, Eugene Pallette, Walter Long, Alva D. Blake, George Stone, Violet Radcliffe, Carmen de Rue, Francis Carpenter, Ninon Fovieri. 5 reels. Copies of this film are located at Eastman House (3 reels only, 35mm. Master positive, not for viewing) and UCLA Film and Television Archives (16 mm. with tinted sequences, plus deteriorating outtakes). This film is available on video.

See also the Video review for this film

A lobby card courtesy of Derek Boothroyd Lobby Card for Children in the House
Review from Variety
Review and advertising text from the Moving Picture World

Review from Variety, April 20, 1916


Cora Norma Talmadge
Alice Alice Rae
Jane Courtenay Jewel Carmen
Charles Brown William Hinckley
Fred Brown W.E. Lawrence
Jasper Vincent George Pearce
Arthur Vincent Eugene Pallette
Al. Fellowes Walter Long
Gaffey Alva D. Blake
The Children George Stone, Violet Radcliffe, Carmen de Rue,
Francis Carpenter and Ninon Fovieri

Roy Somerville has turned out a rather interesting story that will hold the interest of the majority of audiences as produced by the Triangle-Fine Arts Company. It is a five-reel feature and was produced under the direction of C.M. and S.S. Franklin, with Norma Talmadge as the star. Cora (Norma Talmadge) is wedded to Arthur Vincent (Eugene Pallette) and there are two children. Vincent is the son of the president of a bank and is devoting the greater part of his time to Jane Courtenay, a cabaret dancer, who is willing to have him devote his time to her as long as he is a good provider. The wife, who has been sadly neglected, turns to her sister, who is wedded to Fred Brown, a young detective. His brother Charles, who works in the elder Vincent's bank as a cashier, lives with them. He was Cora's first love and has never quite recovered from the fact that she jilted him to wed Vincent because of his money. The cabaret dancer makes several demands on the young Vincent, who tries to borrow money from his father to meet them; failing to receive the loan he agrees to aid several friends of the cabaret charmer to rob his father's bank. After the robbery Charles Brown is accused of the crime and arrested. But the robbers are discovered in their hiding place, and in escaping all but one is killed. Cora is left a widow and the natural supposition is that she and Charles were happily married afterward. Just where the title comes in is hard to say, but the picture while not one of the best that has been produced at the Fine Arts, is one that will get by because it will particularly appeal to women.


Review from Moving Picture World, April 29, 1916

Triangle Program
"Civilization's Child," Five-Reel Kay-Bee and "The Children in the House," Five-reel Fine Arts.

[snipped other review]

"The Children in the House" presents a good three-reel situation, worked out with considerable ingenuity and amplified to five reels by such outworn methods as the burning shack, the automobile chase of thieves by policemen, too near the Keystone style to have dramatic effect, and that last resort to picture-play manufacturer, the automobile run off a cliff. We had enough of that years ago to last us for a long time to come. It is only a pity to spoil an otherwise good story with such clap-trap. These resurrections of old business and the interpolation of a long fairy story break up interest in the main action and result in a composition below the Fine Arts standard.

[omitted, photo of three women with cut line: Scene from "The Children in the House" (Fine Arts)

Advertising text from Moving Picture World, May 6, 1916

[2 page Advertisement. Omitted, photos of Norma Talmadge, Eugene Pallette, Jewel Carmen, two of the children in the cast, and a photo too dark to be identifiable]

Triangle Plays

Norma Talmadge in The Children in the House

Must a woman cling to a faithless husband? Must she continue to live with him and suffer the torture of unhappiness when he has proven himself unworthy of her love-has admitted his preference for another woman?

These are the vital questions in the TRIANGLE-Fine Arts Picture, "The Children in the House," released for the week of April 30th, in which Norma Talmadge, the popular star, is given every opportunity to display that versatile ability which won her fame and popularity.

Real Human Interest

With the possible exception of the war in Europe there is no other subject today so intensely interesting to your patrons as that of domestic relationship-divorce and marriage. So closely is this picture related to their own individual happiness that told in a TRIANGLE sort of way it should prove particularly attractive.

Men and women alike, married or single, all will be enthusiastic over the presentation of this story of the pretty young girl who turned down love to marry money only to realize her mistake after it was too late. The heart aches, the unhappiness, proved to her satisfaction at least that it is never worth while to marry without love.

Full of Thrills, Laughter and Tears

Many indeed are the varied scenes which furnish thrills, tears, joy and laughter to your audience in this latest TRIANGLE PLAY.

Take for instance the spectacle of the auto load of bank robbers plunging after a flying battle with the police over a steep precipice 300 feet high. Its occupants shot down one by one the car is seen to zigzag as it speeds along the mountain road. Then as a shot pierces the brain of the man at the wheel the machine takes one wide swerve, balances for a moment on the edge of the cliff, and then topples down the rocky declivity until it arrives a the bottom a mass of shattered and broken metal. The sight of the big car as it falls over the cliff to certain destruction is warranted to give every audience at least one gasp.

Then there's another thrill when the burglars capture the TRIANGLE kiddies, tie them in a hut for safe keeping, and in a fiendish moment decide to set the house afire. Your patrons will feel their hearts go down to their shoes as they watch the flames creep nearer and nearer to the struggling bodies. It's a race neck and neck between an automobile and the raging fire, and the machine wins just by a hair.

[Omitted, 1/3 page ad for The Beggar of Cawnpore and a form for exhibitors to fill out to be placed on the mailing list for the Triangle Weekly]

Triangle Film Corporation
1459 Broadway, New York

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Last revised, December 21, 2008