20 October 2013 | MartinHafer
Not particularly distinguished.
I have generally scored Mary Pickford's films well. However, the score of 6, while about average, is definitely below average for her. Usually you get better than what you'll see in "Johanna Enlists"--a film with a relatively thin plot and lots and lots of patriotic nonsense.
The film begins on a rural farm. Pickford plays a girlish sort--much like she did in most of her films. However, this character is becoming a young woman (although she was actually 23 at the time Pickford made this film) and her thoughts are on love and a boyfriend. But, being in the middle of no where, her options are limited. In a cute scene, she asks God for help---and only seconds later, a US Army outfit strolls along and decides to pitch camp right across from the farm! Much of the rest of the film is devoted to determining who Johanna will get--the dashing officer (who she inexplicably disliked) or a young enlisted man. There is a bit of controversy involving two guys fighting over her, but frankly it was of little consequence. Then, at the end some blatantly patriotic stuff is tossed in to remind us that the US is involved in the war and that Pickford hates the dreaded Hun.
Basically this is an inconsequential film with a lot of hubbub about the war and patriotism stuck on, rather clumsily at the end. However, even with its shortcomings, it's always a delight to watch Pickford so I would still recommend it to her fans. But, if you aren't, she did make much better films you should see first like "My Best Girl", "Suds" or "Daddy Long Legs" (among others).