30 September 2018 | boblipton
Oh, Mr. Griffith!
James Kirkwood sends word to nephew Billy Quirk that he will be visiting. Billy know that his uncle disapproves of women (save possibly for his own mother), so he and fiancee Mary Pickford agree that she will pose as his maid. They hope she will charm Kirkwood so that he won't object to her marrying his heir. Miss Pickford, however, is so charming that the old man takes a lively interest in her in this sprightly D.W. Griffith comedy.
That's what I can glean from the five minutes of shots and the plot synopsis at the Library of Congress' National Screening Room site. Unfortunately, what they posted (drawn from the Library's Paper Print collection) seems to be unedited footage from the movie, including a lot where Kirkwood ruins the take by breaking up at Quirk's antics and asides. Miss Pickford seems to be having a good time too, once the scene is blown.
This is not the only film that survives in this condition. Movies could not be copyrighted at this time (which is why so many scenes are decorated with the Biograph 'AB', to establish a trademark). Biograph, while they sent paper prints of their films to the Library (which were nominally books, and so could be protected), seems to have sent them in batches. Some of the films, which had been shot but not edited, wound up preserved in this manner.
It was better than what Vitagraph did. That company produced many innovative films in the era. However, they sent highlights, resulting in a few intriguing clips.