After Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton, the silent film era’s “third genius” was Harold Lloyd, who stars in this Horatio Alger-style story of an average country boy trying to make good in the big city.
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Classic Harold Lloyd comedy that is one of his most consistently funny films. The climb/clock sequence is of course one of the most famous sequences in cinema history and the stunt work is still breathtaking today.
In which true love, thanks to an inspired alliance with overzealous police work, spurs our dithering hero to feats of astonishing excellence. Top the clock to stop the clock. And anyway, ain't ancient LA lovely?
It's disarmingly clever and accomplished. The gags and suspense never let up, and vignettes flow together and snowball with grace and intelligence that puts the modern comedy to shame. Who says art can't be funny?
Harold Lloyd's classic comedy about a young man who heads to the big city to make his fortune before getting married, is a textbook example of silent comedy. While not as famous perhaps as Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton, Lloyd's death defying stunts have left us with some of cinema's most iconic imagery. One of the marvels of the silent era.
Good fun, for the most part, easily Lloyd's best film.
"Third Genius" my ass. Lloyd made one film that approaches the brilliance of Chaplin or Keaton, and this is it, and it still isn't one tenth the accomplishment of THE GENERAL or SHERLOCK JR. or THE GOLD RUSH.
Just an excellent comedy. LLoyd is personally my fav silent comedian. Maybe bc he just seems like such an average guy. All he really wants is to get a good job and get with a great girl in most of his films. Very relatable to most. There is a reason this film has become a part of our culture and is spoofed in commercials and the like. Essential.
Buoyed by Lloyd's rascally unstoppable character, the true epiphany here for me was the disguise of the wolf in sheep's clothing. The way in which The Boy's respectable veneer was really a facade for his general amorality and desire to make it big with the aid of any shortcuts on hand make it a great allegory for the rise of early century American capitalism.
Even before we get to the famous climb, the story has already delivered enough good, clever gags to be a perfectly satisfying comedy. The climb, reluctant and and forced, purely motivated by The Boy trying to hide his 'failure,' is a capper on an already good movie.
The stunts are even more impressive for having been accomplished after Lloyd lost his right thumb and forefinger.