IMDb > The Saphead (1920)
The Saphead
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The Saphead (1920) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
6.2/10   974 votes »
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Writers:
Bronson Howard (original play "The Henrietta")
Victor Mapes (play)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Saphead on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
September 1920 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
The simple-minded son of a rich financier must find his own way in the world. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
1 nomination See more »
NewsDesk:
(2 articles)
Buster Keaton on Blu-ray: The Saphead Review
 (From Twitch. 30 July 2012, 9:33 PM, PDT)

New DVD Blu-Ray: 'American Reunion,' 'Chariots of Fire'
 (From Moviefone. 9 July 2012, 9:30 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Keaton Wasted See more (17 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
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

Buster Keaton ... Bertie Van Alstyne
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Katherine Albert ... Hattie (uncredited)
Henry Clauss ... Valet (uncredited)
Alfred Hollingsworth ... Hathaway (uncredited)
Helen Holte ... Henrietta Reynolds (uncredited)
Jeffrey Williams ... Hutchins (uncredited)

Directed by
Herbert Blaché 
Winchell Smith 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Bronson Howard  original play "The Henrietta"
Victor Mapes  play "The New Henrietta"
June Mathis  scenario
Winchell Smith  play "The New Henrietta"

Produced by
John Golden .... producer
Marcus Loew .... producer
Winchell Smith .... producer
 
Original Music by
Robert Israel (1995)
 
Cinematography by
Harold Wenstrom 
 
Art Direction by
F.H. Webster 
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Marcel De Sano .... assistant director
 
Music Department
Robert Israel .... musical director (1995 edition)
 
Other crew
Raymond Rohauer .... presenter (new version)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
77 min
Country:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
One of the few Buster Keaton films in which a hand double is used in a close-up shot to avoid showing that Keaton was missing his right index fingertip.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: 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:All they do here is knock off hats, but I enjoy it. It occupies the mind.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Brady Bunch Movie (1995)See more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
10 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
Keaton Wasted, 2 July 2006
Author: Cineanalyst

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.)

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