Friday, March 23, 2012

THE HAUNTED HOUSE / Joseph M. Schenck Productions - 1921

It's Friday with Tabonga, here at The Dungeon!.. This silent short was on TCM lately, and, I recorded it, durr... So, here's a wild little fun ride as Buster Keaton lands himself in a... Haunted House!

The story's about a bank clerk that gets mixed up with some bank robbers in their 'haunted house' hideout designed to scare off police and snoopers.

At the bank, Buster gets glue all over the bills and causes some hilarious problems you can't even imagine! He even knocks one guy out so that he can pour scalding hot water under him to get him unstuck from the floor!!

Across town at the play, the set falls over on the actress. Buster liked things to fall over, this was the second time the house fell on this lady!! That bottom still is priceless...

The cops are chasing Buster because they think he's involved with the robbery at the bank. Buster always had the most interesting expressions on his face!

Law enforcement stop their pursuit after he runs into a notoriously spooky old house in the country.

Once inside, he starts examining some of the contents. He opens a book up, and...

The way Buster bounces when he hits the bottom here is wild, he does some amazing stunts in this 21 minute film. How many times did Scooby-Doo and Shaggy use this 'stairs into a slide' gag?!

Buster thinks that this guy in the play is the devil!

Watching Buster's face in this scene is so bizarre, he looks upon the character with like, frightened admiration! Really funny.

He gets involved in the robber's antics and thinks he's become a ghost!

So, he ascends the stairs to heaven, but, when he gets to the top, his name's not on the list!!

And, the stairs turn into a slide... All the way to Hell!!

Of course, it's only a dream, and, Buster gets his girl in the end!


Douglas McEwan said...

What a great film this is. I have all of Buster's starring shorts on DVD, a collection that is invaluable: 19 short masterpieces. Buster was a genius. I was lucky to meet him briefly when I was 14, just a year before he died. One of the truly great masters of cinema.

Anbd this is one of the lesser Keaton shorts! If this is his lesser work, imagine how great his best is.

CavedogRob said...

Great film!

Christopher said...

nothing cozier than a silent movie haunted house..

Greg Goodsell said...

The shot with Buster ascending Heaven is my current screen saver.

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