The Country Kid
The Country Kid is a 1923 American silent comedy drama film directed by William Beaudine for Warner Bros. It stars Wesley Barry, Spec O'Donnell, and Bruce Guerin as three orphaned brothers who struggle to preserve their inheritance and remain together.
|The Country Kid|
|Directed by||William Beaudine|
|Written by||Julien Josephson|
|Cinematography||Edwin B. DuPar|
|Edited by||Clarence Kolster|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros.|
Orphaned Ben Applegate (Barry) strives to care for his younger brothers (O'Donnell and Guerin) and run the farm left to them. Their unscrupulous legal guardian, Uncle Grimes (George Nichols) schemes to take their property and separate the brothers, but he is ultimately thwarted by a benevolent judge (George C. Pearce). The Applegates are reunited, their property restored, and they are adopted by caring neighbors.
The story was conceived and written as a vehicle for popular child star Wesley Barry. Barry had been signed to a Warner contract by Harry Rapf in 1922 and was one of the studio's top draws at the time. William Beaudine had directed Barry with considerable success in Heroes of the Street (1922), which led to the pair working together on a number of Warner films, one of which was The Country Kid.
Released at the beginning of November 1923, The Country Kid was distributed on a state rights basis, as were all Warner pictures of the early 1920s.
It garnered mixed to unfavorable reviews. A number of critics found the film "trite" and melodramatic, and many commented on Barry's increasing age. The Variety reviewer reflected, "While there is no particular finesse in the way the picture is put together, the scenes in which the three kids figure hold a definite appeal for the countless thousands with a soft spot for homely sentiment."
It is an extant film, archived in the David Bradley Film Collection at Indiana University and in the holdings of Warner Bros. A complete version and an abridged version are preserved. The Country Kid was one of the films purchased by Kodak for its Kodascope home library collection, the source of a number of abridged surviving films.
- Warner Bros financial information in The William Shaefer Ledger. See Appendix 1, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, (1995) 15:sup1, 1-31 p 2 DOI: 10.1080/01439689508604551
- Munden, Kenneth White (1997). The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States. University of California Press. p. 148. ISBN 978-0-520-20969-5.
- Pawlak, Debra Ann (2012). Bringing Up Oscar: The Story of the Men and Women Who Founded the Academy. Pegasus Books. p. 65. ISBN 978-1-60598-216-8.
- Marshall, Wendy L. (2005). William Beaudine: From Silents to Television. Scarecrow Press. pp. 34–37. ISBN 978-0-8108-5218-1.
- "Wesley Barry in 'The Country Kid'". The Film Daily. XXVI (29): 5. November 4, 1923. Retrieved 2015-03-21 – via Internet Archive.
- Bennett, Carl (ed.). "Warner Brothers Pictures Inc". Progressive Silent Film List. Retrieved 2015-03-21 – via Silent Era.
- "'The Country Kid'—Warner's". Newspaper Opinions. The Film Daily. XXVI (28): 6. November 2, 1923. Retrieved 2015-03-21 – via Internet Archive.
Also, "46 Pictures Reviewed in 16 Cities; 'The Country Kid'—Warner's". The Film Daily. XXVI (75): 6. December 30, 1923. Retrieved 2015-03-21 – via Internet Archive.
- "The Country Kid". Variety. LXXII (11): 27. November 1, 1923. Retrieved 2015-03-21 – via Internet Archive.
- Pierce, David (March 31, 2014). "The Country Kid/William Beaudine". American Silent Feature Film Survival Database. Library of Congress. Retrieved 2015-03-21.
- Descriptive Catalogue of Kodascope Library Motion Pictures. 1932. pp. 162–163 – via Internet Archive..
For survival claim: Pierce, David (September 2013). The Survival of American Silent Feature Films: 1912–1929 (PDF). Council on Library and Information Resources and The Library of Congress. p. 2. ISBN 978-1-932326-39-0.