By the age of seventeen, Mary Pickford had become the first actress to achieve international superstardom. By the time she was thirty, she was the first and only woman ever to own a major movie studio, the only woman to be... more » the highest-paid actor in Hollywood and the first actress to have complete control in making her films. With comedic talents equal to Keaton, Lloyd or Chaplin, the tragic range of Gish and Swanson and business acumen to rival any Hollywood mogul, Mary Pickford was the consummate movie star of the 20th Century. "Mary Pickford: A Life on Film" is the definitive documentary on the most powerful woman in the history of cinema. Hosted and narrated by Whoopi Goldberg.« less
"IF YOU LOVE MARY PICKFORD AND WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT HER LIFE, THIS IS A VERRY WELL MADE BIOGRAPHY. IT`S HOSTED BY WHOOPIE GOLDBERG ??? AND IT TAKES YOU THROUGH HER BIRTH IN 1893 TO HER DEATH IN 1979. YOU SEE PEOPLE LIKE DOUGLAS FAIRBANKS JR AND HER LAST HUSBAND CHARLES "BUDDY" ROGERS TALKING ABOUT THEIR FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH HER AND OTHER ACTORS AND FRIENDS TALKING ABOUT WHO SHE WAS AND WHAT SHE DID. YOU ALSO SEE A CHRONOLOGY OF THE FILMS SHE MADE FROM HER FIRSTS SHORTS TO HER FEW TALKIES, THIS WAS INTERESTING TO ME BECAUSE THERE`S A LOT OF STUFF I NEVER SAW BEFORE. SO,IF YOU LOVE MARY PICKFORD LIKE ME AND DON`T HAVE TIME TO READ A BOOK ABOUT HER YOU`LL PROBABLY LIKE THIS. IT ALSO HAD A NICE RUNNING TIME OF 96 MIN."
Not as detailed as I thought it would be...
Silent Girl | Ontario | 03/21/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For an Image Entertainment production, I thought this biography of Mary Pickford would have been much meatier than it actually was. Overall, this biography gives a pretty good outline of Mary Pickford's life. One thing that annoyed me about the film was how they kept referring to Mary as being American; she was a CANADIAN from Toronto and during her middle age she was concerned about losing her Canadian citizenship and renewed it in honour of her parents who were Canadians. CBC did a Pickford documentary as part of their Life and Times series which was very good and only an hour long. I wish CBC would release their documentary on DVD.They should have included commentary from Eileen Whitfield who wrote a wonderful biography of Pickford in 1997: "Pickford: the Woman Who Made Hollywood". Since Whitfield spent many years doing research for this book, I think she would have been able to give better insight into Mary than someone like Leonard Maltin and the other people who had commentaries in this documentary."
30307 | Atlanta, GA United States | 05/10/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Pickford is a fascinating woman. I could explore all of her many gifts, but recommend you watch this film for that. I am writing because I watched this and another recent documentary concerning Mary Pickford within a one-week period. Both documentaries were fascinating, but, in the end, I found this particular film to be much more compassionate toward the aging Mary Pickford. Had I based my opinion of Mary Pickford on the other documentary, and not seen this film, I would have perceived Mary Pickford as being a pathetic has-been in her later years. It seemed that the other documentary portrayed Pickford's life as being "washed up" after the 1930's. The film carried an air of cattiness toward the aging Pickford. So I was surprised to learn, while watching this film, of Pickford's kindness and contribution in her later years and to see with my own eyes that, yes, Pickford grew to be even more beautiful as she aged. She had her issues, true, but her life didn't exactly end in the 1930's --- not according to this documentary, anyway.
I enjoy biographical interpretations, but, at the same time, am wary of them. We love to tell stories about other people but, too often, our own inner life and opinions are projected out on the very people we tell stories about. It's hard to know what is truth. Having said that, this documentary was kinder to Pickford, and the world needs more of that. Five stars."
Pickford Program Perfection minus 1 * !
Lori Ann | California United States | 05/04/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you have never seen Pickford in action, this is the biography to watch for it is chock full of short footage of the incomparable Mary doing her screen antics. Displaying scenes from her rare unseen silents & talkies, "A Life on Film" made me want to go out searching for Pickford reels to spin for myself. I especially love the scenes of Mary from "Cinderella," "Rosita" (A rare Lubitsch classic) and "Hoodlum!" not to mention "Secrets" which is a Pickford's last talkie. Another thing I love is the home movie footage of Pickford, Chaplin and Douglas. I gave it Minus 1 * because the menu is sparse and there is no extras included. I would have liked a Pickford "Biograph" short to be included or a feature just to wet the appetite of the viewer more but oh well . . . (NOTE TO MILESTONE: Keep those Pickford Pictures coming!!) "
"She lives in the movies; it is there that you will find her
bernie | Arlington, Texas | 02/26/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is an excellent biographical documentary on Mary Pickford (Gladys Smith.) Much more than just a biography of one of the most powerful women in the film industry or in the world for that matter, this presentation depicts the interworking of the film industry of the time.
We see previously unreleased film portions from Mary's personal archive. We also get to watch the highlights of many marvelous films without sitting through the complete viewing. Who would have suspected "The Taming of the Shrew?" Some of the films you will want for your own collection.
The presentation does go in chronological order and even tough we bounce back and forth from diffident presenters as Whoopi Goldberg, and Charles "Buddy" Rogers you do not feel that you are being bombarded with sound bites.