Saturday, April 14, 2012

Sherlock Jr (1924)

With a deadpan expression and quick fire antics, Buster Keaton makes the already short 44 minutes of Sherlock Jr go by in a flash. He works at a theater but is studying to become a detective. The girl he is interested in is also being wooed by a cad. The bad guy foists a burglary on Buster and has him kicked out of the girl's house. A depressed Buster goes back to work at the theater and falls asleep on his projector. He finds himself dreaming and in his dream melds into the screen of the movie being shown. The movie within the movie has all the people in his life transposed with him onto the screen. Hilarity ensues including a scene where he gets pulled over by a cop for speeding - for running too fast on the road. It had me in splits. The other brilliant sequence is one in which the background continuously changes behind Buster after he literally steps into the movie. There are a few dialog slides but the actors' expressions and body language convey volumes. A great way to spend 44 minutes

The close-up frames that show detail, the switching of shots between the protagonists and the somewhat exaggerated facial expressions make sure that nothing the director wanted to communicate is ever lost. Silent movies are lessons in communication.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

welcome back :)