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Film / Falling Leaves

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Falling Leaves is a 1912 short film directed by the first female director, Alice Guy.

Winifred is a young lady who one autumn becomes gravely ill with tuberculosis, or as it was called in 1912, "consumption". The attending physician tells Winifred's mother that "when the last leaf falls, she will have passed away." This comment is heard by Winifred's much younger sister Trixie, who takes the doctor's words literally. Trixie then decides to save her sister's life, by tying the autumn leaves to the trees in the backyard with string. Meanwhile a bacteriologist, Dr. Earl Headley, has come up with an effective new serum for TB.

One of hundreds of films directed by Alice Guy, whose career went back literally to the dawn of moviemaking (she directed her first film in 1896).



  • Hollywood Darkness: Night is suggested by tinting Trixie's room blue.
  • Ill Girl: Winifred, being struck down with tuberculosis in the bloom of youth.
  • Incurable Cough of Death: Winifred's racking cough leads to the summoning of a doctor, who delivers bad news.
  • Maybe Ever After: The film ends with Dr. Headley coming to visit Winifred again after she's cured, with the suggestion that they're falling in love.
  • Whole Plot Reference: The bit about the last leaf falling is basically stolen from O. Henry short story "The Last Leaf".

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