Good old Chesterfield or rather bad old Chesterfield certainly missed the bus on this one a 100% silent feature that opened in Los Angeles (presumably as a support) on March 15, 1929. After vainly trying for a New York berth without success, the picture went into general release on August 1, 1929. One wonders what unhappy cinemas in what unhappy small towns booked the movie as a pre-Interval item that patrons would appreciate coming late for. Actually the plot doesn't start off too uninterestingly the plot, I said, not the movie itself it just gets more and more tepid as it sluggishly proceeds to a no-action climax in fact, a conclusion so dull that I'm sure it played to an empty house. It's Tom O'Brien as an always-wrong detective who brightens the action for a while before we finally tumble to the sad fact that he has only the one funny line and that he's not going to get any funnier, but simply repeat himself ad infinitum at every twist of the plot. Lucien Prival as the super-courteous detective similarly wears out his welcome long before he identifies the killer. I almost wrote "before he pounces on." But that would be incorrect. "Pounces" implies action and believe you me, there is no action whatever in "The Peacock Fan" from start to finish. And by that stage, we couldn't care less who killed Mr. Moneybags, let alone what his or her boring motives may have been. Available on an excellent Alpha DVD.
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