An American businessman's family convinces him to buy a Scottish castle and disassemble it to ship it to America brick by brick, where it will be put it back together. The castle though is ... See full summary »
Roscoe and Buster are working at a vaudeville house. When the crew attacks the strongman for bullying his assistant, the man goes out on strike so the crew puts on a show. When the ... See full summary »
Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle,
Al St. John
There is a big charity function at the house of Mrs. Cheyney and a lot of society is present. With her rich husband, deceased, rich old Lord Elton and playboy Lord Arthur Dilling are both ... See full summary »
A young singer, Marge Dexter, becomes involved in trouble when she works in a nightclub in which two of the band-members are in reality undercover-police officers who believe that the club is the headquarters of a dangerous gang of crooks.
A rotund young man and his wife are spending the day at the beach at Coney Island. Feeling restless and wanting to go to the amusements at Luna Park, he ditches his wife. At the amusement park, he meets a pretty young woman. She arrived at the amusement park with one man, went in with another who had money to pay her entrance, before she ends up spending much of the day with the rotund husband, who managed to get the second man arrested. As the husband and the pretty young woman get into one misadventure after another, the first two men try to win back the affection of the pretty young woman, while the wife goes searching for her husband. The wife and the second man, who are old friends, team up in their quest, which leads to further misadventure for all five and the police. Written by
Roscoe Arbuckle is famous for not only acting in numerous different silent shorts and feature films, but also known for coaching the legendary comedy pioneer Buster Keaton through the basics of filmmaking. Arbuckle and Keaton were longstanding partners in an industry so young in comparison to other industries, such as music and art, and developed a personal relationship, despite Keaton achieving much more global success than Arbuckle. Arbuckle, known by his nickname "Fatty," went on to make and star in dozens of short films, one of them known as Coney Island in 1917, in one of the first projects where an actor and director assumed most of the creative control involved with the project, being fully trusted by Paramount Pictures to make a competent and fun short that would please an eager crowd.
The short follows Arbuckle at Coney Island, a popular amusement park and beach resort, where he escapes he drudgery of hanging with his nagging wife to embrace the atmosphere. Arbuckle has one of the most eventful days on record, as he gets a woman arrested, dresses up like a woman (in arguably the first crossdressing scene in film history), and gets wrapped up in many a convoluted scenario, alongside not only Keaton but the other famous, silent-era duo of the Keystone Kops.
There isn't much to discuss with Coney Island other than its hilarious pacing and amusingly active Arbuckle who, despite his weight, has no trouble moving around and adjusting to the frantic outline of his own short. Paired alongside Keaton, whom at this time was relatively unknown, the two can almost do no wrong together, and we can see how Keaton took after Arbuckle in terms of his "do all" attitude when it came to acting and directing. Furthermore, there's a pleasant wraparound moral at the end of the feature, basically solidifying the idea that friends come before any kind of love interest, a message still brought forth today in the presence of many young individuals. If there's one amazing and satisfying gift of revisiting these old silent classics it's that they provide us with a showcase that personal ideology and original filmmaking styles all circle back to their appropriate ancestry.
Starring: Roscoe Arbuckle, Agnes Neilson, Al St. John, and Buster Keaton. Directed by: Roscoe Arbuckle.
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