After her husband John McKay is killed in an ongoing feud with the Canfield family, a woman takes her baby boy Willie to her sister's house in New York hoping he will never know of the feud with the Canfields. Twenty years later Willie is a grown man and he receives a letter saying he has inherited his father's estate and must travel to his family home to take possession. On the train there he meets a beautiful young woman and falls in love only to learn that she's a Canfield. He accepts her invitation to dinner and quickly realizes that the Canfield men won't kill him while he's in their home. His plan to stay there as a permanent guest is short-lived and the Canfields are soon after him. Written by
Final film of Joe Roberts, Buster Keaton's career "heavy". "Big Joe" suffered a stroke during the filming, and was hospitalized. He insisted on returning to work, however, and died very shortly after the end of filming. See more »
When the donkey refuses to move from the rail tracks, the engineer and others curve the tracks around him. The long shot that shows the train moving past the donkey, however, shows the tracks back in a straight line. See more »
I frankly don't think that this film is that good. Granted there are a few great sequences, among them the train sequence, the chase at the end and the joke about the traffic. The rest of the film, though, was incredibly stretched and weary. Even in the train sequence, Keaton repeats the same joke twice; the one about his tall hat not being able to fit on his head because of the low roof (whereupon he dons his famous porkpie hat).
The whole thing simply feels dated; it doesn't have the incredible pace of later Keatons (like Sherlock Jr.) and it doesn't have the great editing of Charlie Chaplin's or Harold Lloyd's films of the same year (Harold Lloyd released both his most famous feature film "Safety Last!" and arguably his funniest, "Why Worry?", in 1923 - if you like silent comedy those are some of the best). I've always found that out of the three great comics of the silent era (Chaplin, Keaton and Lloyd), Keaton always had the most trouble telling a story coherently through his medium; I always find myself struggling more to find out what exactly is going on on the screen, who's called what and who's angry at who, etc.
This film gets a 6.5/10 from me; it's really not the brilliance that I was expecting from Keaton... more like a historical curiosity.
P.S. I should as well mention here that the version of Our Hospitality that I saw had a terrible musical score that distracted from the movie and did not complement any of the action (except at the very end). It's the one on the VHS double feature with Our Hospitality/Sherlock jr (Kino Video). If I had seen this movie with a better score, I probably would have enjoyed it more than I had.
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