6.6/10
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18 user 5 critic

The Cook (1918)

Cooks make hovoc in seaside resort hotel.

Writer:

Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle ... Chef
Buster Keaton ... Assistant Chef
Al St. John ... Holdup Man
Alice Lake ... Waitress / Cashier
Glen Cavender
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Luke the Dog Luke the Dog ... Dog
Learn more

More Like This 

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At the Elk's Head Hotel bellhops torment the lobby, each other and guests. The elevator is powered by a stubborn horse. A sham robbery turns into a real one. And there is a chase on a ... See full summary »

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Roscoe, his wife and his mother-in-law run a seaside resort. Buster plays a gardener who puts out a fire started by Roscoe, then a delivery boy who fights with the cook St. John, then a cop.

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Buster Keaton shoes horses and repairs cars, with mixed results.

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Storyline

In an attempt at greater efficiency, the chef of a fancy oceanside restaurant and his assistant wreak havoc in the establishment. Adding to the complications is the arrival of a robber. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Considered lost for several years. A surviving print was found and shown, for the first time in over 70 years, in Venice 1999. The surviving print was found in the attic of a former hospital in Norway. Apparently, the director of the hospital in the 1920s and 30s felt that laughter and comedy helped soothe mentally challenged patients and kept a collection of short films by Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and Charlie Chaplin on hand. None of the other short films found were considered lost. See more »

Alternate Versions

The restored print of "The Cook" runs 21 minutes. It was compiled from a 17 minute print discovered in Norway in 1999 and a 10 minute print discovered in the Netherlands in 2002. Both the restored print and the Norwegian print have a blue color tint, while the Dutch version is in black and white. While all three versions are available on DVD, none include the last minute and a half of the film, which is still considered lost. See more »

Connections

Featured in Silent Clowns: Buster Keaton (2006) See more »

User Reviews

 
much better than average slipstick era short
25 May 2006 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Read the trivia section of the IMDb listing for this film--it's really interesting how this silent short somehow survived to only be recently discovered.

The is a Fatty Arbuckle film with assistance from perennial support players, Buster Keaton and Al St. John. It's interesting how much silent comedies had evolved over just a few short years. In 1914, most comedy shorts were incoherent snippets with little plot and lots of slapping and kicking. But 1917-1918, the films, though still short, had real plots and weren't all stupid slapstick (falls, punches, kicks, etc.). This film is an excellent example of a decent well-plotted comedy of this era. Fatty is a cook at a restaurant and lots of silly things occur both here and when he takes a trip to a very strange amusement park late in the film (where people ride around in carts pulled by goats). My personal favorite scenes involve Fatty's dog chasing the bully.

This isn't a great film--Fatty and other silent comedians did better films, but for having a coherent plot and excellent pacing, it's a film worth seeing. If you want to see a GREAT Arbuckle comedy, try finding a copy of FATTY AND MABEL ADRIFT--the best one of his shorts I have seen.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 September 1918 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Koch See more »

Filming Locations:

Long Beach, California, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Comique Film Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Blu-ray)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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