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The Mystery of the Leaping Fish (1916)

Coke Ennyday, the scientific detective, divides his own time in periods for "Sleep", "Eat", "Dope" and "Drink". In fact he's used to overcome every situation with drugs: consuming it to ... See full summary »

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Cast

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Coke Ennyday / Douglas Fairbanks
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The Little Fish Blower
Allan Sears ...
Gent Rolling in Wealth (as A.D. Sears)
Tom Wilson ...
Police Chief I.M. Keene
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Storyline

Coke Ennyday, the scientific detective, divides his own time in periods for "Sleep", "Eat", "Dope" and "Drink". In fact he's used to overcome every situation with drugs: consuming it to increase his energies or injecting it in his opponents to KO them. To help the police he discovers a contraband of opium (which he eagerly tastes) transported with "Leaping Fishes", and the blackmail of a mysterious man who wants to marry the "fish blower" girl. Will Coke be able to free the girl ? Written by Spider Baby <spider@on-the-road.com>

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Comedy | Short

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11 June 1916 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Detective  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

Tod Browning wrote the story for "The Mystery of the Leaping Fish" while recovering from serious injuries in a 1915 auto accident. The crash killed his passenger, actor Elmer Booth. See more »

Connections

Featured in Birth of Hollywood: Episode #1.2 (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
THE MYSTERY OF THE LEAPING FISH (John Emerson and, uncredited, Christy Cabanne, 1916) ***
6 January 2009 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

I know allusions to drug addiction in cinema date as far back as the Silent era, but surely none were as blatant as this bizarre Sherlock Holmes parody! From a story by future horror exponent Tod Browning and starring Douglas Fairbanks (as removed from his typical characterization as can be imagined), it deals with the exploits of master detective Coke Ennyday(!) who's constantly lifting himself up – via the intake of drugs – from apparently chronic moroseness. He contrives nevertheless to accept the titular case, centering around a seaside ring of smugglers (whose leader is literally depicted as being covered in money); aiding the hero in thwarting their nefarious plans is Bessie Love, who shows to be perfectly capable of standing up to any man. While the detection in itself is nothing special, the sheer amorality on display lends the whole a decidedly grotesque quality – which, with the star's perpetual drowsy/euphoric countenance, undeniably heightens the film's comic quotient; the sheer fact that it's all eventually revealed as merely a story being pitched to the studio by Fairbanks, but which is unsurprisingly rejected, clearly makes this a case of 'having your cake and eating it'!


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