The Bacchae

This is a real good Cretinetti silent comedy, titled TOO BEAUTIFUL, in which the clown dresses up and becomes so attractive he starts a riot. The ending is weirdly mythic.

The “chase that gradually sweeps up a whole populace” was an incredibly popular comedy structure in the early silents — R.W. Paul made countless “Get him!” films in England. This one is particularly funny, though, thanks to lots of amusing details along the way, shoves and pratfalls and gestures, which add variety to the continual escalation.

 

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3 Responses to “The Bacchae”

  1. A clear precursor of Keaton’s “Seven Chances” with a soupcon of “Death Becomes Her” at the last.

  2. bensondonald Says:

    There’s something oddly appealing about the hammy women. Too often in early comedy normal-looking women are obliged to merely react sensibly to outrageous goings-on, perhaps with a little flirtatiousness or hands-on-hips “Well, I NEVER” outrage.

  3. It’s pretty startling when the tear him to bits. But nice to see them getting so into it all. In RW Paul’s chases, the women don’t seem to act at all, they just run through shot as instructed, often laughing their asses off. Deed/Cretinetti seems to have got them to stay in character, maybe even recruiting actors!

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