A scoundrel of a man is desperate for some food or money in part to pay his rent. He changes his focus when he spies a pretty girl working in a laundry. His attempts to win her fail because of her boyfriend who also works in the laundry. But the scoundrel goes back to his original quest when he sees that a bag of money has just been handed over to the laundry's manager. Using a little ingenuity, the scoundrel manages to steal the money. Due to circumstances, the manager believes the boyfriend stole the money. But as the scoundrel, the boyfriend, the pretty laundry clerk and the manager go about their daily business, the money inadvertently gets passed from one to another. The scoundrel tries to get the money back while eluding the police while mayhem around them all ensues. Written by
When Turner Classic Movies played this recently, they showed the 1918 re-release version so this review is for that one (although I've heard there's not too much of a difference between them). Ford Sterling is our lead villain, a worthless man who is always pretending to do good while in reality he's always up to something crooked. The film starts off with him stealing milk from a baby and then he wonders into a laundry store where he flirts with the woman (Minta Durfee) working there but he's real intent is to steal clothes. I've very hit and miss when it comes to Keystone films as quite often I think they are just a bit too silly for their own good. At times this silliness pays off and you get a very funny film but I don't think that's the case here. For the most part I found the film to be extremely long for its two reels and at times I really wished I had hit the fast forward button. The only thing that really makes the film worth sitting through is the performances by Sterling who is clearly very good at playing this type of snake character. You could just tell by the glee in his eyes that Sterling was having a blast playing this jerk. With that said, it really didn't get any laughs but I will admit that the ending, a romp through the laundry, was fun.
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