Mrs. O'Brien is eager to be accepted as part of high society, and she is hosting a fox hunt as part of her plans. Her husband and daughter, though, have no interest in society affairs. Mrs. O'Brien wants to invite Lord Abernathy to the hunt, and she mentions this to the 'society pilot' who is advising her. But this woman and a confederate are merely using Mrs. O'Brien and the hunt for their own purposes. When Lord Abernathy is unavailable, they convince an ambitious young man to impersonate him, so that they can proceed with their scheme. Written by
Harold Loyd is pretty funny, and a good physical comic. Among Those Present deals with the contrast between high society and the rest of us. It seems to have been a more popular theme during the 1920s than it is now. (Cf., The Great Gatsby.) Not that we don't have our share of contemporary explorations of the same issue, as in Trading Places, but now the contrast seems to be more about wealth and less about "class" in the old fashioned sense.
The first half of Among Those Present has Loyd imitating a British aristocrat, telling ridiculous stories about "the hunt" to an assembly of awed guests at a tony party, and trying to ride a horse that others refer to as a "brute." (The subsequent ride is more imaginative than the similar one in Auntie Mame.) In the second half, Loyd has lost his trousers escaping from a bull through a barbed wire fence but doesn't realize it. This is the most outlandishly amusing part of the film. No matter how Loyd tries to cover up the fact that he is pantsless, the attempt fails. It's like Laurel and Hardy trying to change trousers after their escape from prison. Probably the single funniest moment in the movie is when Loyd, still in his skivvies, finds himself hopping froglike past a couple of dignified ladies on a bench. (I won't explain what led up to this.)
I laughed out loud a few times even though I wasn't in a particularly good mood while watching it. I mean, my brain hadn't been chemically altered or anything. It's quite amusing.
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