MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 9,218 this week

The Saphead (1920)

 -  Comedy  -  September 1920 (USA)
6.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.2/10 from 941 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 17 critic

The simple-minded son of a rich financier must find his own way in the world.

Writers:

(original play "The Henrietta"), (play), 2 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 109 titles
created 13 May 2011
 
a list of 22 titles
created 06 Aug 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 31 May 2012
 
a list of 17 titles
created 09 Jan 2013
 
a list of 469 titles
created 5 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The Saphead" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Saphead (1920)

The Saphead (1920) on IMDb 6.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Saphead.
1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Sherlock Jr. (1924)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A film projectionist longs to be a detective, and puts his meagre skills to work when he is framed by a rival for stealing his girlfriend's father's pocketwatch.

Director: Buster Keaton
Stars: Buster Keaton, Kathryn McGuire, Joe Keaton
The Penalty (1920)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A deformed criminal mastermind plans to loot the city of San Francisco as well as revenge himself on the doctor who mistakenly amputated his legs.

Director: Wallace Worsley
Stars: Charles Clary, Doris Pawn, Jim Mason
Western | Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Dumped by his girlfriend, Buster drives west and winds up in a ghost town called Vulture City, where he appoints himself sheriff.

Directors: Buster Keaton, Charles Lamont
Stars: Buster Keaton, Warren Hymer, Dorothy Dix
Doughboys (1930)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A naive and wealthy young man seeks to impress a girl and then unwittingly signs up for army service.

Director: Edward Sedgwick
Stars: Buster Keaton, Sally Eilers, Cliff Edwards
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Director: Chester Withey
Stars: Tully Marshall, Norma Talmadge, Marguerite Marsh
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A dim-witted slumlord tries to reform a gang of urban boys (and impress an attractive young woman) by transforming their rough neighborhood into a more decent place.

Directors: Zion Myers, Jules White
Stars: Buster Keaton, Anita Page, Cliff Edwards
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Charlie and another man compete in trying to help a young lady cross a muddy street. The rival finds a wooden plank which Charlie takes from him. They fight over an umbrella belonging to ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Lehrman
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Ford Sterling, Chester Conklin
The General (1926)
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

When Union spies steal an engineer's beloved locomotive, he pursues it single handedly and straight through enemy lines.

Directors: Clyde Bruckman, Buster Keaton
Stars: Buster Keaton, Marion Mack, Glen Cavender
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After literally walking to Canada from England, Buster takes a cross-country trip across Canada on a railway motorcar (speeder).

Directors: Gerald Potterton, Buster Keaton, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Buster Keaton
The Iron Mule (1925)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

In 1830, a train known as the Iron Mule is loaded with passengers, and starts off on its trip. Along the way, the train faces numerous obstacles and delays. The engineer is prepared for ... See full summary »

Directors: Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Grover Jones
Stars: Al St. John, George Davis, Glen Cavender
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

In a hotel lobby an inebriated Charlie runs into an elegant lady, gets tied hup in her dog's leash, and falls down. He later runs into her in the hotel corridor, locked out of her room. ... See full summary »

Director: Mabel Normand
Stars: Mabel Normand, Charles Chaplin, Chester Conklin
The Scribe (1966)
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  
Director: John Sebert
Stars: Buster Keaton, Cec Linder
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Edward Jobson ...
Reverend Murray Hilton
Beulah Booker ...
Agnes Gates
Edward Connelly ...
Mr. Musgrave
Edward Alexander ...
Watson Flint
Irving Cummings ...
Mark Turner
Odette Taylor ...
Mrs. Cornelia Opdyke
Carol Holloway ...
Rose Turner
Jack Livingston ...
Dr. George Wainright
William H. Crane ...
Nicholas Van Alstyne
...
Bertie Van Alstyne
Edit

Storyline

Nick Van Alstyne owns the Henrietta silver mine and is very rich. His son Bertie is naive and spoiled. His daughter Rose is married to shady investor Mark. Mark wrecks Bertie's wedding plans by making him take the blame for Mark's illegitimate daughter. Mark also nearly ruins the family business by selling off Henrietta stock at too low a price. Bertie, of all people, must come to the rescue on the trading floor. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Release Date:

September 1920 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A mamlasz  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A rare Buster Keaton smile is visible in the scene in which Bertie reads the newspaper account on the raid of the gambling house. See more »

Goofs

When Bertie's car pulls up to the house after the aborted wedding, the front gate is closed, but when he gets out of the car it is wide open. See more »

Quotes

Bertie: I'm good. I've tried my best to get over it - but I can't - and I still kneel down and say my prayers every morning - before I go to bed.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow (1987) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Keaton Wasted
2 July 2006 | by See all my reviews

This isn't a Buster Keaton film; it's merely a film starring Keaton. Having Keaton star in this feature-length, supposedly more-serious film (as opposed to the short comedies Keaton himself made) was a shrewd business move by Joseph Schenck, to boost Keaton's popularity for his upcoming projects, especially among the critics. It's an ironic twist that today "The Saphead" is only as widely circulated as it is because of its association to Keaton. Keaton was one of the greatest screen comedians and, at times, was an innovative filmmaker. Sapheads, however, made this film.

The light melodrama is worthless, and I think the comedy isn't funny. To have Keaton only act as a good-natured idiot is to limit and waste his talents. The film itself is a filmed play, with yappy intertitles and an awkward mix of melodrama and comedy, none of which works. Keaton understood comedy--the gags, timing and momentum. Watch Keaton's best films (even his lesser ones) and you can see the huge difference between them and this--how and why they are funny and this isn't. Keaton also knew that cinema isn't theatre, that intertitles should be used economically in silent film, and he knew how to parody melodrama to mix cohesively within a comedy. "The Saphead" can be, at least, instructive in demonstrating how good Keaton's films are.

(Note: Some scenes are slightly damaged.)


10 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
A wonderful moment Chrissie
He runs so gracefully... Chrissie
Discuss The Saphead (1920) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?