30 user 12 critic

Free and Easy (1930)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical | 22 March 1930 (USA)
A bumbling manager tries to get a small town beauty contest winner into the movies.


Edward Sedgwick


Richard Schayer (scenario), Paul Dickey (adaptation) | 1 more credit »




Complete credited cast:
Buster Keaton ... Elmer Butts
Anita Page ... Elvira
Trixie Friganza ... Ma
Robert Montgomery ... Larry
Fred Niblo ... Director Fred Niblo
Edgar Dearing ... Studio Gate Guard
Gwen Lee ... Gwen Lee - Actress in Bedroom Scene
John Miljan ... John Miljan - Actor in Bedroom Scene
Lionel Barrymore ... Lionel Barrymore - Director of Bedroom Scene
William Haines ... William Haines - Guest at Premiere
William Collier Sr. ... William Collier Sr. - Master of Ceremonies at Premiere
Dorothy Sebastian ... Dorothy Sebastian - Actress in Cave Scene
Karl Dane ... Karl Dane - Actor in Cave Scene
David Burton David Burton ... Director DavidBurton


Gopher City Kansas hosts a beauty contest. The winner, Elvira Plunkett, and her mother go to Hollywood. The Chamber of Commerce also provides Elvira with an agent, Gopher City's own Elmer J. Butz. Elmer likes Elvira and the shy Elvira likes him, but Mrs. Plunkett, a formidable woman, has little use for hapless Elmer. On the train west, they meet movie star Larry Mitchell, who takes a shine to Elvira and helps her meet MGM directors once they get to Tinsel Town. Elmer, meanwhile, wants to help Elvira with her career and he also wants to be her man. Movie stardom does come to the Gopher City entourage, but to whom is a surprise. And who will win the lovely Elvira's hand? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


SUNDAY AND MONDAY- On the Stage - "Miss Plains Beauty Pageant"- A Revue of Local Beauties (print ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Palace Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - May 9, 1930) See more »


Comedy | Musical


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The three main characters of the film - Elmer Butts, and Elvira and Ma Plunkett - come to Hollywood from Gopher City, Kansas. Trixie Friganza, who plays Ma Plunkett, was in fact from Kansas. Buster Keaton, who plays Elmer Butts, was also born in Kansas. See more »


When Larry orders his car, a visible mike descends from the upper right hand corner of the frame while he says his line, then rises out of sight again. See more »


Elmer Butts: Oh woe is me, the queen has swooned, after you.
Fred Niblo: The queen didn't swoon after me!
Elmer Butts: She swoon after me?
Fred Niblo: She didn't swoon after anybody!
Elmer Butts: Then why all the excitement?
See more »


Referenced in Dispatches from Elsewhere: The Boy (2020) See more »


Snake Charmer
Danced by Doris McMahon during the desert scene
See more »

User Reviews

MGM's First Snuff Film
15 August 2002 | by Shelly_Servo3000See all my reviews

If you're interested in watching a major movie studio kill a comic genius' career, then "Free and Easy" is for you. If you want to watch a movie that makes you seeth with anger, while watching your favorite star sink lower and lower into an alcoholic haze, then by all means, watch "Free and Easy". However, if you want to be entertained, by all means stay away from this movie. Its only redeeming qualities are hearing the voices of Buster Keaton and Bill Haines, and the amusing (in the lowest possible way) musical number of "Oh King" at the end. But beware the clown costume.

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English | German

Release Date:

22 March 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Easy Go See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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