Archive for Diana Kane

Ray’s a Laugh

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , on July 6, 2011 by dcairns

In answer to your unspoken pleas, NO, I will NOT stop banging on about the sublimely fatuous Raymond Griffith, my new comedy hero. Over at The Chiseler you can peruse my latest cannonade in salute to his conspicuous overall awesomeness.

Here’s Raymond, characteristically top-hatted in MISS BLUEBEARD, a Bebe Daniels drawing-room farce in which RG provides an ever-so-slightly broader variety of capering than those around him. Initially trying to cover up for a philandering friend, he ends up struggling with an unconscious woman, anticipating Buster Keaton’s drunken bride routine in SPITE MARRIAGE by some years.

Eleanor Keaton, who reprised that act with Buster on TV in the fifties, said of her husband, “Women were tremendously important to him, as props.” Why that’s OK, both with Keaton and Griffith? Because the comedy routines presuppose that using a woman as an inanimate object is absurd and inappropriate, therefore funny. It’s far from sexist.

Griffith’s use of a broomstick to transport the prone lady (Diana Kane, I think) does seem a little racy, though, dependent as it is upon an unspoken recognition of anatomical features not open to discussion in films of the period: buttocks.

I don’t want to end on the word “buttocks”, so here’s the lovely poster, which is in no way representative of anything that happens in the film, apart from the undeniable fact that pajamas are worn.