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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Mighty unlikely story!

Author: wmorrow59 from Westchester County, NY
12 March 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Mighty Like a Moose ranks as one of Charley Chase's most satisfying and well crafted farce comedies, and happens to be my personal favorite. This memorably titled short offers twenty minutes of clever sight gags, deftly choreographed physical comedy, and amusing quips (rendered via title card, of course), all based on a wacky and wildly implausible premise. We're told up top that this is "a story of homely people -- a wife with a face that would stop a clock -- and her husband with a face that would start it again." Soon we meet buck-toothed Charley Moose and his wife Vivien, who has an enormous nose. What follows is a tale of irony worthy of O. Henry. Plausibility flies out the window when a plot hinges on such a patently dubious series of interconnected coincidences: i.e., first, that Charley would have his overbite corrected the very day his wife would have her nose fixed, second, that each spouse would keep their respective cosmetic surgeries secret from the other, and third, that when bumping into each other in public afterward, Charley and Vivien wouldn't recognize each other. Sounds like a bit of a stretch, doesn't it? Multiple stretches is more like it. Clearly, we're in the world of farce comedy here, and as long as you can relax and forget about realism you're likely to enjoy the ride.

Our story gets off to a leisurely start as the various plot points are established, but things pick up once the newly refurbished Charley and Vivien have "met" and made a date to attend a party together at the home of Charley's dentist. They each rush home excitedly, enter separately and are initially unaware of each other's presence. (Mr. & Mrs. Moose appear to be quite wealthy, incidentally, as they appear to live in a mansion the size of a luxury hotel.) There follows a beautifully timed sequence reminiscent of Buster Keaton's The Navigator, during which husband and wife dash about the house without ever quite meeting up face-to-face. And once they arrive at the party the comedy really kicks into high gear, when Charley is compelled to dance with gawky Gale Henry. Henry, an estimable player in her own right in short comedies dating from 1914, is hilarious as the dance partner who brings great vigor but little grace to her dancing. Director Leo McCarey provides an elegant cinematic touch during this sequence, when the camera pans down to show us only the shoes of Charley, Gale, Vivien and Vivien's dance partner, yet we're able to follow precisely what's happening between the principles by observing the way they position their feet.

Unfortunately for Charley and Vivien the party they're attending is raided by police, and from there on the complications multiply, even after they manage to escape the dragnet and return home. When Charley realizes that his newly beautified wife was attempting to step out with another man he resolves to each her a lesson . . . while conveniently forgetting, of course, that he was attempting to do the very same thing. The last few minutes of this film offer some of Chase's funniest physical comedy, capped with a great sight gag for the punchline. Mighty Like a Moose leaves the viewer with a warm glow, and surely ranks with the most amusing comedies produced by the prolific, sadly underrated Charley Chase.

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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Very Enjoyable

Author: Snow Leopard from Ohio
12 February 2004

For all its silliness, "Mighty Like A Moose" is a very enjoyable feature, and has almost everything you could ask for in a short silent comedy. The premise, beginning with a mix-up between a married couple played by Charley Chase and Vivien Oakland, is goofy, but it's amusing and has potential. From there, the script makes good use of the possibilities, the two stars bring it off well, and Gale Henry also helps out in one funny scene. There's lots of activity, very little of it plausible, but all of it paced nicely, with a number of entertaining details.

The climactic sequence is very good. There are other movies from the era that tried something similar, but this one is especially well-crafted and humorous. It all fits together well, and is well worth watching if you enjoy silent comedies.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

One of the TEN funniest silent two reel comedies ever made!

Author: Stan16mm from Hollywood, California
14 September 1999

From start to finish, this 1926 classic two reeler from the Hal Roach Studios seems to sum up what was fun about the 20's. It stars the now forgotten comic genius, Charley Chase and was directed by the legendary Leo McCarey, who was unknown then but would earn his keep with Roach and graduate to greener pastures in the 30's and 40's. Recently released onto video and disc, this is one of the ten best examples of silent screen comedy and should be seen by audiences of all ages. Although today his star has virtually diminished, Charley Chase was considered the leader in the short subject comedy field in the waning years of the silents. He helped the careers of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy before they were brought together as a team, Leo McCarey and a host of other talents. It is a shame that he is all but remembered today. Check out this little gem of a film. Once you do, you will be seeking out other films from this classic comic. He had his hand in over 300 films and many of them survive. Rediscover this lost giant of a film from a bygone era and its giant star.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

One of the most memorable flicks from one of the most unfairly overshadowed silent clowns

Author: SnorrSm1989 from Norway
22 November 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

(***Minor spoilers***)

If there's something in the world of silent clowns that puzzles me, it is that Charley Chase never got his well deserved "break through" in the movies. Oh well, maybe it isn't that strange, really, inasmuch as he never starred in any full-length features. But when I think of it, such an explanation makes it all only more mysterious -- because why the heck didn't Chase get any offers to play the leading lead in features? One explanation is that his character, no matter how amusing, was simply too realistic to suit a longer story; without the burlesque elements that Chaplin, Keaton, Lloyd, Langdon and other comedians possessed, it can be assumed that the comedy he made and which worked so well for twenty minutes would get repetitive after a few more reels. I don't quite buy this, though, as Chase's gag construction is magnificent and could, I believe, at its best maintain the interest of viewers alone for a longer period; at least I am tempted to think so when MIGHTY LIKE A MOOSE runs the show.

Mr. Moose isn't extraordinary handsome, and Mrs. Moose is hardly a "classic beauty;" he possesses the truly biggest front teeth of any human being on the planet, and she has a remarkably large nose. Both of them takes plastic surgery without the other's knowledge, and when they meet by accident just a little later, he doesn't recognize his wife and she doesn't recognize her husband. A number of hilarious misunderstandings begin, with many clever gags all the way through. I don't think I'll reveal anything further, to make the viewing more enjoyable for you. Because if you're a fan of silent comedies, or even if you aren't, MIGHTY LIKE A MOOSE offers so many memorable moments within such a short time that I would look upon it as a downright shame not to see it; silly indeed, but no less extremely funny.

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Excellent Plot

Author: gavin6942 from United States
26 January 2016

After a homely married couple separately undergo plastic surgery, they unwittingly plan an extramarital affair with each other.

This was directed by Leo McCarey, who really did not come into his own until the 1940s, making films along the same lines as Frank Capra. I had no idea he was involved in the silent comedy business.

Charley Chase (1893–1940) was an American comedian, actor, screenwriter and film director, best known for his work in Hal Roach short film comedies. He was the older brother of comedian/director James Parrott. Somehow I had never heard of Charley Chase before... he just does not get listed with Lloyd, Keaton, Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy... but maybe he should be. This concept was revolutionary and there is even a gigolo!

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Not Bullwinkle but Moose Just The Same

Author: getyourdander from United States
29 November 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The often overshadowed Charley Chase of the silent era stars with Viven Oakland in a 3 reel feature about a married couple who are stuck in the marital rut. One has a huge nose, & the other hideous false teeth. Both on the same day get their looks altered. With the nose job & new teeth, they become a different couple. They meet each other without knowing & fall into a renewed love.

Then there is a lot of comedy. Charley & Viven show a lot of energy in this script as both are required to move around a lot. There is a sequence where both are in their house trying not to get caught with the other one looking. Chase does a classic fight sequence with his other self to defend himself against advances on his wife by his altered self. Chase shows lots of energy in this fight.

Both of them find out about their new selves & there is little more to come by but laughter. Director Leo Macarey works well with this cast & he is one of the better comedy directors in the history of films. This one has lots of panels to read early on but as the action takes over, the titles become rarer in the latter half of the film. An enjoyable piece of comedy to be sure.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Great comedy

Author: rigoletto339 from United States
21 January 2011

We saw it the other day on the big screen, with theater organ accompaniment.

You all know the plot and the outcome, from the other reviews. Chase is great in this one. In one big scene, he's both the aggrieved husband and the "other guy" trying to cut in on Mrs Moose. The two of him duke it out in a hallway behind a door. He's in a house-robe, and the other he's in a suit, with a hat. (Ever notice how many men wore hats in those days?).

You might have missed the line near the end, where the dog recognizes Mr Moose when he puts the fake teeth back in - and the screen caption reads "Ah! His master's teeth".

One of the most well-known advertising line was RCA Victrola's "His Master's Voice".

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Mighty Funny Charley Chase

Author: CitizenCaine from Las Vegas, Nevada
8 June 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Mighty Like A Moose is one of many short films Director Leo McCarey did starring Charley Chase. What a dandy it is! Charlie and his wife both undergo plastic surgery to improve their hideous appearances unbeknown-est to each other. They then meet at a party and become smitten with each other. Now they can't allow each other to find out they're cheating. That's the preposterous premise of this frantic farce. Vivien Oakland, one of the few comic short leads to have a flourishing career long after the silents, is perfect as Charley's long of nose wife. Charley has an awful case of buck teeth, which are quickly dispatched at the dentist's. After a party is raided by police for no other reason then to practice raids, Charley and his wife frantically try avoiding each other at home for fear the alterations in appearances become known. Both have been photographed with their new features at the party. The hilarity back home culminates in Charley trying to teach the no-good-nick cheating with his wife a lesson. The no-good-nick of course is the new Charley, which his wife comes to realize long before Charley teaches a lesson in faithfulness. This is one of Charley Chase's better efforts. *** of 4 stars.

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2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

if you can ignore the glaring problem with the plot, it's great

Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
20 May 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Okay. To enjoy this silent comedy short you MUST suspend disbelief concerning the major starting point for the film. If you can't then you'll probably be more likely to score this film a lot lower. Charlie Chase has a HUGE overbite and his wife has a nose large enough to have its own area code. Unknown to each other, they have both been saving to have surgery to correct these defects. Apparently, plastic and dental surgery was better back in the 1920s because neither seemed to have any need to recuperate from these major surgeries and they looked just dandy right away!! Okay, remember I said to ignore this, right?! Okay, well you also have to then ignore the difficult to believe idea that both could then meet and have no idea the other is their spouse. Okay, that you allowed yourself to accept these two silly premises, the film gets really, really good.

Charlie makes a pass at her and she makes a pass at him. Both are shocked and thrilled because no one has ever really considered them attractive. So, because of this new vanity they agree to go on a date. But, they both sneak back home--not wanting their spouses to know! Anyway, they meet later and are quite attracted to each other. But what about the poor spouses supposedly at home? Well, they both learn that the other is married and both anticipate their marriages will result in divorce because they really want to be with each other! Late in the film, Charlie figures out that the woman really is his wife and he goes through a very funny sequence where he plays both the boyfriend and the old husband--by changing his clothes and putting in false teeth when he plays the hubby! It really is a laugh riot to see him bouncing in and out of the room as he appears to be fighting with another person! You really have to see it to believe it. However, the wife sees an ad with Charlie's before and after photos and knows what's happening. In the end, they both feel pretty foolish!

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1 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

Stan Laurel and Charley Chase

Author: The Black Englishman from London, England
12 March 2002

Although Charley Chase was not significant in his own right, he did make a contribution towards developing Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy during the silent 1920's. When he appears in a film with either of them, you can see him mentoring their skills. 'Mighty Like a Moose' is an example of this.

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