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Plain Clothes (1925)

Detective Harry is on the trail of a stolen diamond necklace worth $100,000.


Harry Edwards


Frank Capra, Al Giebler (titles) (as A.H. Giebler) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview:
Harry Langdon ... Harvey Carter
Clair Cushman Clair Cushman ... Rosie O'Grady (as Claire Cushman)
Jean Hathaway ... Mrs. O'Grady - Rosie's Mother
Vernon Dent ... The Crook
William McCall ... The Crook's Accomplice
Leo Sulky Leo Sulky ... The Pawnbroker
Evelyn Sherman Evelyn Sherman ... Cecile Rhodes


The Ferrett Gang has stolen a diamond necklace. The gang is renting a room from a woman whose daughter is being courted by Harvey Carter, a clueless private eye. Cecile Rhodes, the owner of the necklace, promises Harvey $10,000 if he finds it. The gang thinks Harvey, with his honest face, would be the perfect person to fence the goods. Can Harvey out think the gang, earn his reward, and avoid the wrath of his girl's formidable mother? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Short


Did You Know?


During the shoot-out in the alley a long-shot shows Harry firing his gun by a wall where no cars are parked. In a closer shot, he fires his gun before a row of parked cars. When he's shown from a distance again, still firing, the cars have disappeared. See more »

User Reviews

Plain funny
13 October 2009 | by hte-trasmeSee all my reviews

"Plain Clothes," one of Harry Langdon's series of wonderful shorts for the Mack Sennett studios, puts him in the role of a not-especially expert detective charged with recovering stolen jewels. The crime plot line itself frankly doesn't generate any laughs but its main service is in placing the childlike, innocent, goodhearted Harry (he helps the movers repossess his office's furniture) in a dangerous and no-nonsense situation (where caught in the middle of a gunfight, he stands befuddledly still and shoots a capgun in random directions!).

This is a device that always seems to work well, and when the plot recedes "Plain Clothes" features some of the greatest Harry Langdon sequences -- running up and down the stairs in order to catch a busy elevator, shadowing a man who turns out to be a fellow (and more competent) detective, trustingly pulling at the crook's (Langdon staple Vernon Dent who plays off him well as always, here in tough-guy mode) lapel to make sure he too is a detective, &c. stand with Langdon's best comedy moments.

As a side note, this would seem to be the first appearance of the battered soft felt hat that would be the closest thing to a consistent costume Harry's character would wear. Here he surprisingly comes up with an effective and in-character way of saving the day himself, and this cute and fun ending, combined with all the wonderful sequences showcasing Langdon's comedy, make this a very fun and funny short to watch. My great thanks to those who preserved the only surviving print of "Plain Clothes" so we can enjoy it today!

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None | English

Release Date:

29 March 1925 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mack Sennett Comedies See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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