Sally of the Sawdust

Sally of the Sawdust

A film by D.W. Griffith
Starring Carol Dempster, W.C. Fields, Alfred Lunt

Fresh from the Ziegfeld Follies, W.C. Fields made his second screen appearance as Professor Eustace McGargle, a lovably disreputable confidence man who becomes the unlikely guardian of an orphaned circus waif (Carol Dempster). Intending to return Sally to her grandparents, McGargle learns that her wealthy and esteemed grandfather is a stern judge who harbors a deep contempt for shysters and show people. And wouldn’t you know it, McGargle soon finds himself wanted by the police and chased by bootleggers, all the while trying to protect his cherished Sally!

Sally is minor Griffith, but it demonstrates that, whatever the ostensible genre, he remained (and, pace Steven Spielberg, remains) the master manipulator of human emotion. —J. Hoberman, Village Voice


Technical Information

Production Year
Country of Production
Running Time
104 mins

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