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July 1994


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Ara Rubyan <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 1 Jul 1994 17:21:36 EDT
text/plain (29 lines)
Recently Sandy Dwiggins wrote (regarding Buster Keaton):
As for surrealism, there is always Sherlock Jr.
Did you know that he was billed as the "human mop" in his parents' vaudeville
act?  They used to turn him upside down, and mop the stage with his hair,
throw him around a bit more.  How that for a happy childhood?
What an unhappy life he led.  He was arguably the most talented of film
directors in his era (yes, including Chaplin, yet his greatest movies
made little or no money.  It was only after the studios took away his
autonomy and teamed him with Jimmy Durante in a series of forgettable films
that he became a bankable star.  Except by then his creative drive seemed
By the way, some of his funniest stuff was done for Candid Camera.  Have you
ever seen his shtick as the hapless diner who fumbles everything into his
soup? His sandwich, the salt shaker, his watch, and finally his toupee?
Anyone who wants to swap favorite Keaton moments, or comments on his body of
work is welcome to write more on this wonderful artist here or e-mail me at
[log in to unmask]  I know that this discussion started with observations about the
racialist and/or racist aspects of his films, but sorry guys:  Keaton is a
real treasure.
Ara Rubyan
West Bloomfield, MI