A city slicker is driving through a small town when his car has a flat. A local boy and his girlfriend walk by and the boy volunteers to fix the man's tire. While he's doing that, the city ...
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A city slicker is driving through a small town when his car has a flat. A local boy and his girlfriend walk by and the boy volunteers to fix the man's tire. While he's doing that, the city slicker makes a move on the boy's girlfriend and persuades her to go back to the city with him. After she leaves, her boyfriend packs up and goes to the city to try to win her back.Written by
Leading Lizzie Astray, one of the many Fatty Arbuckle shorts produced for the film company Keystone, opens with a city slicker (Ed Brady) driving through town when his car gets a flat tire. A local boy (Arbuckle) and his fiancée (Minta Durfee), who happen to walk by, lend a hand to the man, who proceeds to try and pick up the boy's fiancée. The man attempts to get the woman to venture back to town with her, an offer she accepts, for she sees the glamor of the city being more attractive than her options at home, much to the dismay of the boy. Depressed and lonely, the boy attempts to win back his wife by venturing into the big city.
Leading Lizzie Astray gets a lot of early silent filmmaking conventions down right, from the quick editing to the cheap but effective special effects (there's a great scene of a piano crashing into a wall), but forgets the magic of the formula that this story provides. When the local boy travels to the city, he is a fish walking on land, and Arbuckle, who serves as writer/director here, forgets to incorporate that kind of alienation into his story. It's a frustrating feature, and it could've saved the film from being an assembly of slapstick comedy.
Early Keystone shorts were known for their scuzzy aesthetic and bare-bones plot, yet some quality standard has to be achieved with these films. Arbuckle is one of several early comedians who never got his recognition, mostly due to a murder allegation, and with that, Leading Lizzie Astray is one that was inevitably swept under the rug as one of his weaker offerings.
Starring: Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle, Minta Durfee, and Ed Brady. Directed by: Roscoe Arbuckle.
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