Not having reviewed a film since December 19, 1909, the trade paper Variety made up for lost time on February 6, 1909, with its critique of Selig's Montana Schoolmarm. The scene is a wide-open frontier town, where all the cowboys pay court to a pretty schoolteacher. The heroine, however, has eyes only for the local intellectual, derided as a "school boy" by his rough-and-tumble rivals. The unfortunate young man is shot down and killed by the town bully. At this point, the other male citizens change their tune, vengefully tracking down and lynching the murderer. The final scene was far too graphic for most filmgoers of the era.
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