5.6/10
199
5 user

The Curtain Pole (1909)

An upper class drawing room. A gentleman breaks the curtain pole and goes in search of a replacement, but he stops into a pub first. He buys a very long pole, and causes havoc everywhere he... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(story), | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Set in an early cinema house, this comic short illustrates the problems with the gals' hats obscuring the movie patron's line of vision.

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Linda Arvidson, John R. Cumpson, Flora Finch
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A humongous and obese anthropomorphic swine dressed like a fine gentleman in a fancy dinner attire tries to make a pass at a solitary lady having a picnic.

Adventure | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An early adaptation of the Ali Baba tale.

Director: Ferdinand Zecca
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The beach front house, where Fatty and Mabel live, has been "launched" out to sea by the villains. When Fatty and Mabel arise, they find the beds floating in a sea of water.

Director: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Stars: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Mabel Normand, Al St. John
Short | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The story, while not biographical, is founded on incidents in his life, showing his devotion for his sick wife, Virginia. Desperate from his utter helplessness to ameliorate his dying ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Barry O'Moore, Linda Arvidson, Clara T. Bracy
Short | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

La cella di un condannato a morte. L'uomo sta dormendo e sogna il passato che lo ha portato in prigione : vita frenetica, cattive amicizie, alcolismo, l'assassinio di un cassiere di banca. ... See full summary »

Director: Ferdinand Zecca
Stars: Jean Liézer, Bretteau, Ferdinand Zecca
Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Porter's sequential continuity editing links several shots to form a narrative of firemen responding to a house fire. They leave the station with their horse drawn pumper, arrive on the ... See full summary »

Directors: George S. Fleming, Edwin S. Porter
Stars: Vivian Vaughan, Arthur White, James H. White
Short | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Porter's sequential continuity editing links several shots to form a narrative of the famous fairy tale story of Jack and his magic beanstalk. Borrowing on cinematographic methods ... See full summary »

Directors: George S. Fleming, Edwin S. Porter
Stars: Thomas White
Short | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A poor but honest young man wins the hand of a beautiful Princess after facing a series of exciting adventures involving apparitions, cartwheeling skeletons, a dragon, and plump dancing girls from the Folies Bergere.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Fantasy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Alice dozes in a garden, awakened by a dithering white rabbit in waistcoat with pocket watch. She follows him down a hole and finds herself in a hall of many doors. A key opens a small door... See full summary »

Directors: Cecil M. Hepworth, Percy Stow
Stars: May Clark, Cecil M. Hepworth, Blair
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
...
Monsieur Dupont
Harry Solter ...
Mr. Edwards
...
Mrs. Edwards
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Party planner / Woman on street
Clara T. Bracy
George Gebhardt ...
Man in top hat
...
Man in bar / Vegetable vendor / Party guest
...
Party planner / Nurse with buggy
Edit

Storyline

An upper class drawing room. A gentleman breaks the curtain pole and goes in search of a replacement, but he stops into a pub first. He buys a very long pole, and causes havoc everywhere he passes, accumulating an ever-growing entourage chasing him, until he escapes them through a bit of movie magic, only to discover that the pole has already been replaced. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

chase | farce | See All (2) »

Genres:

Short | Comedy

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 February 1909 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Карниз для штор  »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in Hollywood (1980) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Keystone before Keystone
20 November 2001 | by See all my reviews

Some of the film histories suggest that D. W. Griffith's The Curtain Pole, made for Biograph in 1908 and released early the following year, is the first slapstick comedy film made in America. Considering the enormous number of missing titles from the early days -- as well as the uncertain production dates of some of the survivors -- one hesitates to call anything a "first," but it's safe to say that this is a very early example of the genre. It is certainly one of the few outright comedies Griffith would produce, and it's interesting to see the youthful Mack Sennett in the lead role, several years before left Biograph, founded the Keystone Studio, and began making similar films himself.

According to the memoir of Griffith's first wife Linda Arvidson (who has a brief role in this film), Sennett's character was an excitable Frenchman named Monsieur Dupont, although his nationality plays no part in the proceedings. In the opening scene Monsieur Dupont is present at a party where he manages to break the hostess' curtain pole, and it is his offer to purchase a new one that starts the ball rolling, so to speak. In the course of acquiring the replacement pole Dupont manages to poke and trip practically every citizen in the community, and his increasingly frantic efforts to bring it back to his hostess' home while evading his pursuers provokes a rousing chase that builds greatly in scale as it progresses. The tempo of the editing, which of course would become a Griffith specialty, is quite rapid for the period, and certainly must have been exciting for contemporary audiences. Even today, we are startled when the pole upsets a baby carriage. Also notable is the use of footage run backward, and the close-up that closes the film, depicting a crazed-looking Sennett chewing the pole in frustration.

Whether or not it was the first American slapstick comedy, I believe we can safely say that The Curtain Pole remains one of the funniest movies ever made in Fort Lee, New Jersey.


9 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 5 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

"This Is Us" Star Chris Sullivan and TV to See in 2018

"This Is Us" star Chris Sullivan gets emotional about Season 2. Plus, "The IMDb Show" looks at the most highly-anticipated TV shows of 2018 and talks to Lena Waithe about "The Chi."

Watch the show