4.9/10
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8 user 5 critic

A Busy Day (1914)

Not Rated | | Short, Comedy | 7 May 1914 (USA)
A jealous wife is chasing her unfaithful husband during a parade, after he starts to flirt with a pretty woman.

Director:

Mack Sennett
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles Chaplin ... The Wife
Mack Swain ... The Husband
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Storyline

Charlie plays a woman, jealous over her husband's interest in another woman. She gets in the way of a cameraman, knocks over a director and a policeman, and gets thrown into a crowd of spectators at a military parade. She attacks her husband and his new flame. The husband throws her off the pier into the harbor. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 May 1914 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Busy as Can Be See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Keystone Film Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Released as a split reel along with the comedy The Morning Papers (1914). See more »

Connections

Featured in Chaplin's Goliath (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Charlie in drag
26 May 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Am a big fan of Charlie Chaplin, have been for over a decade now. Many films and shorts of his are very good to masterpiece, and like many others consider him a comedy genius and one of film's most important and influential directors.

Everybody has to have at least one misfire in their careers, even the best directors and actors have not so good films or films they regret. From his early still evolving period before he properly found his stride and fairly fresh from his vaudeville background, like 'His Favourite Pastime', 'A Busy Day' shows that Chaplin is not immune from this. While an important milestone period for him, his Keystone years/films generally were watchable and interesting enough overall but patchy, none being among his best work.

'A Busy Day' has a few good points. While a little primitive and not exactly audacious, the production values are far from cheap.

There are also a few amusing moments, a little zest on occasions and it was interesting to see Chaplin in drag.

Where 'A Busy Day' falls down is that mostly it's not particularly funny. The timing feels limp and there is very little, if any, freshness or originality. There is an over-reliance on slap-stick and it is very broad and very repetitive. There is not much charm here and there is not much to be emotionally invested by. The story is flimsy, so much so things feel over-stretched, there are not many Chaplin short films where a short length feels very dull but 'A Busy Day' is one of them.

Found myself uncharacteristically disappointed by Chaplin, which was not expected because generally even in lesser efforts he was one of the better things about them. Here he does not look interested and goes through the motions, there is none of the comedy/directing genius that he is deservedly hailed for. The rest of the cast are not much to write home about.

In conclusion, an early career misfire. 4/10 Bethany Cox


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