Even the trick shots that are executed to perfection are all done by Keaton himself, there are no special effects or subliminal editing cuts to achieve the desired movement of the balls. The dreaming Keaton leaves his projection booth and moves to the theatre below where he enters the actual screen upon which the film is being projected. 64. Gargantuan Must-See Movies List (Official 1001 List + Letterboxd 1001 List Combined) show list info. There will always be conflicting assessments as to who was the greatest of all the comedic clown performers during the Silent Era of filmmaking. This characteristic separates the Keaton and Crane characters. (He then performs two more complicated near-misses without an edit; those shots aren't as insane, but do seemingly require him to put the cue ball in exactly the right place via shot #1.) 91. Plus it's just plain silly to criticize a movie for relentless awesomeness. Having been utterly flummoxed by this gag 25 years ago, I was determined to solve the mystery for myself this time. Carter84 uses Letterboxd to share film reviews and lists. Sherlock Jr. (1924) Global Flickchart Rank: #143 My Flickchart Rank: #972. What an ending. Keaton was a veteran of the vaudeville life from a very young age, where I learn that his father threw him around from the age of three, and it was in these formative acts that Keaton understood how the live audience would be more inclined to laugh at his acrobatic and gymnastic endeavours when he finished with a neutral expression on his visage rather than smiling at the achievement. I recently expanded the list to 250. Osiris66 uses Letterboxd to share film reviews and lists. (Sorry, "A Day in the Country.") The film’s inspired plot device begins once Keaton implements a superimposition technique whereby the spirit of Keaton’s character appears to exit the body of the projectionist asleep on a stool in his booth, and we are astonished to see two images of the actor within the same shot. (These films can be viewed with some inspired orchestral accompaniments to the flickering sights, as live musical counterparts often were conducted inside the movie auditoriums during a live screening.) This gives the film its final riveting gag to leave the viewer smiling as the end title card is displayed, and it perceptively articulates how human beings tend to pluck up extra courage by imitating the larger-than-life movie stars of their escapist leisure time. This leads to the film’s first extended gag as our hero discovers a dollar bill in the collection of rubbish and now has enough cash to buy an expensive box of chocolates in the adjacent shop for his object of affection. 91. 2020. Instead of being chosen by film experts, the Letterboxd community voted on various movies to represent must sees and this was the result. Likewise when he wanders to the house of McGuire’s girl whom he plans to ask for her hand in engagement, he sneakily amends the pencil-drawn price on the box from one dollar to four dollars. But maybe it was akin to Sigourney Weaver nothin'-but-netting that no-look over-the-shoulder half-court shot in Alien Resurrection. The sight gag is double-layered, for it suggests how Buster is somewhat chaste in his relations with women and also comments on the censorship of cinema and how this prevents Keaton the filmmaker from allowing his acting proxy to imitate the final step. The Ascent (1977) 97. Bio: I have been a lover of films for as long as I can remember. (Apparently I wanted to kick off the year with a certain winner.) Made by fans in Auckland, New Zealand. But the reflexive ending, with our hero repeatedly consulting onscreen lovers for tips on how to woo his own paramour, ties a satisfying life vs. art bow onto the whole thing. Watched The blistering imagination of the movie/dream is not forgotten by an underwhelming tacked on conclusion to wrap up the story. Back at work, he falls asleep in the projection booth and dreams that he literally steps into the movie screen, where instead of a clueless grunt, he’s a suave, sophisticated detective named Sherlock Jr., who solves the crime. James Agee notes how ‘Keaton’s face ranked almost with Lincoln’s as an early American archetype; it was haunting, handsome, almost beautiful, yet it was irreducibly funny.’ His large, deep expressive eyes could reveal so much amidst the poker-faced visage, like an imposing statue with penetrating eyes that stare back at you from any angle. The difference is that Keaton’s stunt was not a trick shot; that was a real house falling down due to a movie interpretation of a cyclone, and as it collapsed there was only a few inches of leeway from the heavy structure landing on the man and seriously injuring him. Watched it probably 30 times. © Letterboxd Limited. 2002. His invariably high levels of skill at his job are gleaned even before his presence occurs through the panicked concern from the Crane and Connelly characters that their crime will undoubtedly be solved by this world’s greatest detective, and reinforced with the intertitle foreshadowing his appearance, labelling him as ‘the crime-crushing criminologist.’ There is a sharp contrast between the filmmaking sizzle displayed within the dream to the prior aesthetic, as Keaton moves his camera more fluidly in this mansion than was evidenced in the father’s real home, perhaps indicating how the detective does not feel stilted with absorbing the philosophy behind his detective work. Could not figure out how it's done. As Murray describes the stinging joke scenario’s appeal through the realisation that ‘all the steps elided in editing can’t be shown on screen, no matter where Keaton sets the camera.’ That was true for a movie made in 1924 and almost one hundred years later it is still a risky taboo in a family feature film. 518 films watched. When the front facade of the house topples upon Keaton and our plucky protagonist remains standing as the gap in the window frame passes around his body frame, he casually turns his head backwards to inspect the damage quizzically, but without overly theatrical swoops and contorted facial expressions. After the protagonist follows his man (from right-to-left) until being detected, Keaton ends up on the top of a moving freight train jumping from carriage to carriage left-to-right, in another exquisitely well-placed camera shot where the actor completely trusts his ability to complete the stunt without being displaced from the stationary frame of the camera’s eye. Rewatched Buster Keaton filmed this shot in ‘Sherlock Jr.’ (1924) in reverse, with the train backing away from the road crossing While IMDb may be famous for the Top 250, it is not the only one. The 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die book series but with a twist. While she has figured out that this projectionist is innocent, he continues to be innocent and naive now in attempting to reciprocate the affections bestowed by his beloved. We understand why he wants to impress the girl with a sign that he has a solid income, for she lives in a beautiful family home owned by her wealthy father (played by Buster Keaton’s father Joe). Paul Schrader. Random ... Sherlock, Jr. 90. Inglourious Basterds (2009) Rotten Tomatoes® 88%. Keaton stepping through what we'd naturally but falsely assumed to be a mirror, or opening what appears to be the door of a large safe and stepping out onto the street, the surreal nature of the gag delights. 24. And its second half is pretty much a nonstop parade of How in the almighty fuck?!? In the dream Keaton is joined by his theatre manager now known as Gillette (in a homage to the first actor who portrayed Sherlock Holmes on film), who also has the innate capacity to do very implausible actions outside of a dream like his sleuth partner. Film data from TMDb. My current favourites in Letterboxd (I would add images or links to videos if I could) 1:Heimat - Edgar Reitz -The best tv series ever. This presents one of the film’s biggest laughs as he immediately follows behind the tall figure of Crane walking in synchronicity along the footpath and even clipping his heels from the very close shadowing. Letterboxd - Top 250 Movies - Page 2 show list info. "Sherlock Jr." entered the public domain in January 2020, allowing a wider audience a better chance to discover this incredible innovative director and actor from silent motion pictures through this fantastic offering. In terms of just plain awe, I'd say cinema peaked here, ludicrously early. In "Sherlock Jr." Keaton plays a movie projectionist who has two loves away from the job of operating motion pictures to pay his bills. 300 films watched. Film critic Noel Murray discusses this sequence in detail, positing the conceptual thought that the film is all about a geometrical rectangle (within the frame of the screen that is displaying the film). The Shining (1980) Rotten Tomatoes® 92%. Pather Panchali (1955) Rotten Tomatoes® 97%. One further acknowledgment as to how astutely practical Keaton’s thoughts on the nature of cinema’s illusions continue to be remarkably relevant. One need only consult moments on live television where sound is momentarily lost and a presenter is accidentally rendered speechless to accept how much spectators depend upon the audio-visual dynamic for convenience. 65. (My ancient Kino DVD—a twofer with Our Hospitality—lists its runtime as 44 minutes.) In real life, though, it’s the girl who puts the pieces together and figures out who really stole the watch. I finally admitted defeat and looked it up, but confess that I still have trouble mentally picturing what happens, even after reading a detailed description. The film's most famous trick shot involves Keaton jumping into a small suitcase and disappearing. Murray states how the gags are based on ‘Keaton moving on the same plane as the other characters’ like a primitive computer game where two-dimensional characters could only move along the horizontal axis from the left or right side. Directed by Buster Keaton. Film profile for Buster Keaton, Director and actor, born 4 October 1895. And even when it's perfectly obvious how an effect was achieved, e.g. And triply arbitrary given that in fact it took me well over an hour to reach "The End," because I kept replaying gags over and over in what was often a futile effort to work out how they were accomplished. We gathered how rich he is because an introductory intertitle informed us that the father had so little to do during the days that he hired a male companion (Erwin Connelly) to aid him with doing nothing. In film '' and has been described like `` Good reads for movies '' that! Most complicated film for special optical effects and in-camera tricks the Rings the! 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