Monday, September 14, 2009

Jason goes to the Niles Film Museum for Comedy Shorts Night--September 12th, 2009

Of course, it's always good to be back at my local silent film hangout, and even more when it's Comedy Shorts Night. But one little quibble--they played a trio of sea-faring flicks a week early. Talk Like a Pirate Day is next Saturday, September 19th (Aaarrrrr! And I'll be annoying as heck while working there). Anyway, on to the movies:

THE VAGABOND (1916): Charlie Chaplin plays the violin, accidentally steals some money, gets chased, and meets and woos a beautiful gypsy girl (Edna Purviance), all with his characteristic comedy. Best scene--washing the face.

CAPTAIN KIDD'S KIDS (1919): Harold Lloyd loses his chance at his special girl (Bebe Daniels) when his bachelor party gets a little too wild. When you end up a prisoner of a shipful of woman pirates, you know that was a good party.

THE LOVE NEST (1923): Another tale of lost love, Buster Keaton hopes to forget his girl with an around-the-world trip in a small boat, "Cupid". He's picked up by whalers, but I'll pretend they're pirates. In any case, he has a few scrapes with the short-tempered captain (who has a habit of throwing his crewmen overboard and tossing a funeral wreath after them). Fortunately, he escapes, unfortunately, he escapes to a Naval firing range.

SAILOR'S BEWARE (1927): And finally, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy star, but before they were officially a team. Ollie is a steward aboard a cruise ship. Stan is a simple, honest taxi driver who ends up accidentally stowing away. On board (his fare, in fact) is a pair of con artists--a woman and her dwarf husband who dresses as a baby to steal from people. After getting suckered in a game of dice, Stan ends up foiling their plot.

And that's that, another fine set of comedies on the busiest night of the month at the Niles Film Museum. Next week, the "filmed in Pleasanton" series starts with REBECCA OF SUNNYBROOK FARM (1917) and the shorts MABEL, FATTY, AND THE LAW (1915) and THE PERILS OF PAULINE: DEADLY TURNING (1914).

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