Benny Rubin takes a tour of the "Lame Brain Sanitarium" and meets some of its strange patients.




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Complete credited cast:
Vernon Dent ...
Dr. Smith (J-O-N-E-S)
Polly Moran ...
Gus Shy ...
Earl 'Snake Hips' Tucker ...
Dancer (as Snake Hips)
Albertina Rasch Ballet ...
Ballet Troupe
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:


The Lame Brain Sanitarium is managed by Dr. E.D. Smith, who spells his last name J-O-N-E-S. Benny Rubin, believing he may have problems - the primary one being that he spends more money than he makes - is thinking about checking himself in. As he tours the sanitarium, he meets some of the other patients, including a fiddle destroyer, a man who believes he's developed an unbreakable plate, a dancer with elastic legs, and a Danish opera singer and his colleague (old friends of Rubin's) with a poor sense of geography. But the craziest people in Rubin's mind may be the staff, especially Dr. Smith, who believes he can cure Rubin by operating. In the end, is Rubin really crazy or are the crazy ones the writers? Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Short






Release Date:

1 November 1930 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Albertina Rasch Ballet sequence is missing from the extant print shown on Turner Classic Movies; most likely, it was removed at one time and used in another short subject, possibly one of the early Three Stooges entries. See more »

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User Reviews

Were Michael Jackson's Thriller-era dance routines copied from Earl 'Snake Hips' Tucker?
18 August 2006 | by See all my reviews

Maybe I haven't seen enough performances by other dancers from over the decades to know otherwise, but after seeing Earl 'Snake Hips' Tucker do his routine in this comedy short (aired tonight, Friday 18-AUG-2006, 10:45 p.m. as a "One Reel Wonder" filler on the TCM Turner Classic Movies channel) I would swear that nearly all of Michael Jackson's moves first displayed during his "Thriller" days were copied from this early film.

I was astounded how amazingly similar the choreographed set of fluid moves were between what I recall seeing Michael doing for the first time years ago (and not the similar-but-jerky gyrations of the 50's Elvis/Chuck Berry-era days) and this "Snake Hips" guy I saw in tonight's short movie.

I only wish I knew the official descriptive names of each move like a dancer would so I could list them all.

So, was this old 2 minute segment the source of his inspiration and following world-wide fame? You be the judge if you are lucky enough to catch it sometime (I noticed it was not listed on the TCM schedule).

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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