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Days of Thrills and Laughter (1961)

An appreciative, uncritical look at silent film comedies and thrillers from early in the century through the 1920s. It starts with a 1905 look at French comedy, goes through the 1910s with ... See full summary »


Robert Youngson


Robert Youngson

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Douglas Fairbanks ... Himself (archive footage)
Charles Chaplin ... Himself (archive footage) (as Charlie Chaplin)
Stan Laurel ... Himself (archive footage)
Oliver Hardy ... Himself (archive footage)
Harry Houdini ... Himself (archive footage) (as Houdini)
Pearl White ... Herself (archive footage)
Harry Langdon ... Himself (archive footage)
Ben Turpin ... Himself (archive footage)
Charley Chase ... Himself (archive footage) (as Charlie Chase)
'Snub' Pollard ... Himself (archive footage) (as Snub Pollard)
Mack Sennett ... Himself (archive footage)
Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle ... Himself (archive footage) (as Fatty Arbuckle)
Mabel Normand ... Herself (archive footage)
Ford Sterling ... Himself (archive footage)
Boris Karloff ... Himself (archive footage)


An appreciative, uncritical look at silent film comedies and thrillers from early in the century through the 1920s. It starts with a 1905 look at French comedy, goes through the 1910s with Sennett, Chaplin, and Fairbanks, and into the 1920s with Max Roach, Snub Pollard, Harry Langdon, Al St. John, Charlie Chase, and the teaming of Laurel and Hardy. Thrillers feature Houdini and serials, with special attention to Pearl White, Ruth Roland, and Monty Banks. The film often lets the silent pictures speak for themselves, running entire one-reelers or significant chunks of an old movie. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Hollywood's Wildest, Most Wonderful Era!


Not Rated | See all certifications »






Release Date:

5 May 1961 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Risas y sensaciones de antaño See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(cut) (1961)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film makes extensive use of Chopin's "Tristesse" and Franz Von Suppe's "Morning, Noon and Night in Vienna". See more »


In the opening sequence, a filmed fight between the hero and the villain is supposedly projected in slow motion. Yet, the villain's coat moves in real time, indicating that the actors had staged the slow-motion effect. See more »


Narrator: [Last lines; a 1910 audience departs from a nickelodeon] These, then, were the days of thrills and laughter. A time so long past, that the youngest members of this departing audience are today in their fifties. As for the laughmakers and thrillmakers, they too have vanished. Leaving behind no successors, but only moving shadows. So the crowds depart. The show is over. And alas, dear friends, our little show is over, too.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"Days of Thrills and Laughter" opens with what the narrator calls "the first double-feature title" in which the opening credits are shown on the right-hand side of the screen while an excerpt from the 1922 Snub Pollard comedy "The Movies" is displayed on the left.

When the credit for the film's composer-conductor appears, the narrator calls out, "Hold it!" and both sides of the frame freeze. "OK, bring up that name," intones the narrator, as "Jack Shaindlin" expands to nearly the full width of the frame. The narrator declares, "That's enough!," the name shrinks back to its original size, and the movie starts up again, with the narrator explaining, "Sorry, folks, it's in his contract."

At the end of the credits sequence, the movie freezes once again so producer-writer Robert Youngson's name can do a cartwheel while expanding to large size. To which the narrator exclaims, "What a showoff! Take Youngson down - all the way down!" as the name shrinks and disappears. See more »


Edited from The Joy Rider (1921) See more »

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User Reviews

A "Silent-Comedy" Documentary Of Chills And Thrills
27 July 2013 | by strong-122-478885See all my reviews

Released in 1961 - If you enjoy watching fantastically wild stunts and hilariously crazy slapstick comedy turned up to full-throttle, then this thrill-packed documentary is definitely guaranteed to get you roaring with peals of laughter.

Selected from hundreds of hours of vintage film clips, producer Robert Youngson brings to the viewer the funniest scenes ever captured on film from the likes of Charley Chase, Stan Laurel, Mack Sennett, "Snub" Pollard, Oliver Hardy, The Keystone Kops, Boris Karloff and Kewpie Morgan.

This delightful anthology is a treasure-filled look at yesterday, reminding all of the invention and artistry of uninhibited movie-making that took place during the silent era.

Presented in b&w, Days Of Thrills & Laughter (which is jam-packed with uproarious sight-gags, fast-paced car chases and elaborately staged pranks) has a running time of 93 minutes.

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