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One of the Smiths (1931)

Charley, representing a manufacturer of musical instruments, is sent to investigate why certain mail orders have not been settled. Charley, carrying multiple bulky instruments, boards a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
... Charley
Leo Willis
Eddie Baker
Jimmie Adams
Harry Bernard
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Storyline

Charley, representing a manufacturer of musical instruments, is sent to investigate why certain mail orders have not been settled. Charley, carrying multiple bulky instruments, boards a train and gives the conductor, the porter, and the passengers a terrible night as he tries to settle into his upper berth. Arriving at his rural destination of Beaver Dam, Charley masquerades as a hillbilly to track down the missing instruments. At the barn dance, he sings "Handsome Jim." Written by Scott MacGillivray

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Genres:

Comedy | Short

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Release Date:

23 May 1931 (USA)  »

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(Western Electric Sound System)

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1.20 : 1
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Soundtracks

Handsome Jim
(uncredited)
Written and Performed by Charley Chase
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User Reviews

 
Not Zeb Smith's Boy?
6 February 2018 | by See all my reviews

For his last three-reel comedy, Charley Chase takes his urban character back to hillbilly country. The mail-order company he works for notices that the tubas and other brass instruments they have been shipping have not been paid for, so they send Charley on the train with the latest consignment, with orders to get paid in full, and to get paid for the earlier orders, or repossess them.

The hillbilly comedy only takes up the second half of the film; the first half has Charley doing the classic two-men-in-an-upper-berth routine solo, with a tuba, and it's a lovely variation on the routine. In fact, this one has many classic routines, including an elaborate mechanical apparatus of the sort that Our Gang used to build in the silent days; a well-executed train-and-horse stunt, two musical numbers (in one of which, Charley sings as a quartet!) and seemingly every bit comedian that appeared in Roach comedies from the 1920s and 1930s, allowing Charley and his director, kid brother Jimmy Parrott, to run a lot of the gags the two had devised and executed as comics and directors over the previous dozen years.


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