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Justice of the Peace
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Short | Comedy

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28 January 1917 (USA)  »

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Backup, All the Way
4 February 2012 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

Al St. John's uncle, Roscoe Arbuckle, had gotten a new contract with Joe Schenck. While he was busy putting together a crew and scripts, Al went to the Triangle lot -- where Mack Sennett's second team put together comedies at a cheaper price to fill out the bill -- and with future Buster Keaton cameraman Elgin Lessley, filmed a few short comedies. This is the only one that survives.

It's not a particularly good one, mostly because it's a knock-off of those charming rustic comedies in which Roscoe and Mabel Normand would play young lovers. Lake is a pretty good stand-in for Mabel, but the husky young man who is supposed to be Arbuckle is pretty much of a nullity. Al is a money-hungry villain, up to no good and achieving no good end. And the titles are all doggerel. You can skip this one.


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