Film: 2545

Feature Drama | 1920 | Silent | B/W


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Continuing story. Reels 1 - 5 may be found in 17255, 2545, 32985, 2574 and 17266.
Man is an inventor and tinkers with a contraption. He sits back looking rather unsatisfied and looks over his shoulder up at the wall. Close up of a picture on the wall with the motto ' The Bluebird for Happiness'. He turns back and sighs. Woman pegging clothes onto washing line. She is doing her laundry. Husband tinkers with machinery - a great cloud of soot is ejected onto the washing on the washing line. Wife turns round, sees grubby sheets and is shocked. Exasperated she runs into house, opening and slamming the door behind her. She looks very angry and calls her husband John. He gets up from his desk and approaches her. She opens the door and points outside. Her soiled sheets on the washing line. She argues with him as they stand side by side. He looks downcast.
The boy, Billy, splashing in waterhole. Very distraught Billy's mother pleads with her husband. She has clenched fists. She clasps her hands together and walks off, casting her eyes heavenwards. Remourseful, the husband points angrily and attempts to leave to perform a noble deed. Wife drags him back. She smiles and pats his hand reassuringly - it is their wedding aniversary. She smiles and he smiles back and motions 'Shhhh' as he puts his finger to his lips asking her to be quiet, and for her to wait where she is. He asks her to close her eyes and gently covers her eyes. He reaches around the cornr and gets a wrapped present. He tries to put it in her hands, but her hands are clenched, so he gently prises them open and places present in her hands. She smiles. He says 'NOW' and she looks delighted. She opens her present - tearing the string off it. He ruminates and looks pleased with himself. She pulls a pair of white gloves from a box. He looks very pleased with himself. She embraces her husband, thanking him for the wedding anniversary present. She kisses him on the cheek. She lays a glove on the back of her hand and feels its texture. When asked how he could afford the gloves he says he bought less alcohol this week. She holds her husband and asks him a question. He agrees and they kiss. They separate, she looks at gloves again, beams and again throws her arms around her husband. Great tenderness. She departs, happy. She holds basket and stands by washing on the washing line. Her husband blows a kiss to her out of camera. He is pleased and stands straight making a vow to touch another drop. (The man is an alcoholic). He looks at his fire extinguisher invention and swigs from a bottle - he is absent-minded!
Two smartly dressed men in suits sit at desk having a discussion. One is apparently a 'shady' lawyer. The other is a representative of a rival fire extinguisher company. The men are up to no good. Men examine a letter. Lawyer looks perplexed - he rubs his chin and shakes his head. Men come to an agreement. One nods his head, collects papers, gets up and leaves office.
Wife opens the door having wiped her hands on her apron or pinny. It is her husband's rival - Walter Howe. Mary allows Howe in but looks surprised. Howe holds his straw boater. The two talk. She has a naïve, innocent face. He is more worldly wise. Her husband enters and wearing his straw panama looks around. The three stand around, one man drunk, wife ashamed, and Howe dismissive. John takes his hat off and throws it away. Howe appeals to Mary in front of John. John is drunken and looking cocksure. Wife leaves, ashamed. Howe talks to John. John looks surprised and sways. The son, Billy, and his dog approach wooden verandah and home. Dog stands on hind legs and (we are intended to believe), looks through the keyhole. Billy sits in porch. Dog sees men talking inside house; he takes Billy by the hand (this sounds ridiculous doesn't it!). Billy looks through keyhole and walks off disconsotately with his dog. Billy's mother crying as she cooks at the stove. Dog and Billy enter. Howe and father are arguing, Howe haranguing father. Billy puts his hand to his mouth and whispers to his dog. He clicks his fingers. The dog growls. Howe looks worried. Billy repeatedly clicks his fingers, dog snarling, and baring his teeth. Howe, scared, backs away. Dog sees man out of the door. Billy's father is pleased, and smiles. The dog crawling along is backing Howe up against a garden fence. Howe points in fear at dog. A cat's head appears above the fence in close up. Dog chases cat and man thinks dog is after him. John and Billy standing in the porch laugh and hold onto each other. They enter home and stop. Mother is crying and holding a handkerchief to her face as she cooks. Billy says something to father who nods. Father walks into room.

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