23 user 27 critic

Battling Butler (1926)

A love-struck weakling must pretend to be boxer in order to gain respect from the family of the girl he loves.


Buster Keaton


Paul Gerard Smith (adapted by: from the 1923 stage success of the same name), Al Boasberg (adapted by: from the 1923 stage success of the same name) | 2 more credits »
1 nomination. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Buster Keaton ... Alfred Butler -posing as Battling Butler
Snitz Edwards ... Alfred's Valet
Sally O'Neil ... The Mountain Girl
Walter James Walter James ... The Moutain Girl's Father
Budd Fine Budd Fine ... The Mountain Girl's Brother (as Bud Fine)
Francis McDonald ... Alfred 'Battling' Butler - The Prizefighter
Mary O'Brien Mary O'Brien ... Battling Butler's Wife
Tom Wilson ... Battling Butler's Trainer
Eddie Borden ... Battling Butler's Manager


Alfred's father wants him to make of a man of himself so sends him off on a hunting and fishing trip. He doesn't catch or shoot anything, but he does fall in love with a mountain girl. When her father and brothers laugh at this they are informed that he is Alfred "Battling" Butler, the championship fighter. From there on the masquerade must be maintained. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


KEATON wins the laugh championship of the world in this greatest of all screen comedies! A love story. A prize-fight story! A knockout - and how! You can't stop laughing! (Print Ad- Middlesboro Daily News, ((Middlesboro, Ky.)) 8 December 1926)


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The close-up of Alfred Butler's hands as he opens the box with the wedding ring inside was shot with a hand double, since Buster Keaton was missing the tip of his right index finger. See more »


The date on the hotel register when Battling Butler signs it is four days earlier than the date when Alfred signs it directly under Battling Butler's signature a few hours later that same day (November 2nd vs November 6th). See more »


Intertitle Card: By dinner time the only thing Alfred had on his mind was his stomach.
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Crazy Credits

The "THE END" test is shown on a boxing bell. See more »


Featured in The Great Buster (2018) See more »

User Reviews

very good story, not quite as many laughs
28 April 2006 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This is a very good Buster Keaton film. However, some might be put off by the scarcity of pratfalls and belly laughs compared to many of his other efforts. That's because this film is much more plot driven and character driven than most silent comedies--and that works well for me, though you might miss the more acrobatic and violent character he plays in his shorts and in some of his full-length ones.

Buster plays a spoiled rich young man who really needs to be toughened up--so his dad tells him to go camping. The next segment is probably the funniest, as it cuts to a "wilderness" scene--complete with a butler, tub, poster bed, and all the other modern conveniences (that's the way I'd like to camp!). While "camping" he meets a nice girl and he is smitten. Instead of Buster going to propose, he sends his butler--who immediately knows her dad will say "no" because he wants a virile, more "studly" son-in-law. So, the butler panics and says that Buster is the famous boxer Alfred "Battling" Butler! Now, the two men do have the same name and are roughly the same size--but that's about the only similarity. Daddy gives his hearty approval and Buster is married. But, when the real Butler wins the title, Buster has a hard time pretending any longer. Later, the real Butler retires and Buster takes his place--going to training camp and working for a title defense! You'll have to tune in to see what happens next, as this only takes you through about half the film--watch it and enjoy.

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None | English

Release Date:

19 September 1926 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Battling Butler See more »

Filming Locations:

Kernville, California, USA See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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