(taintedsky) wrote in slowclub,


buster keaton

i first saw keaton at the art gallery last year and instantly fell in love; my friend and i sat upstairs at the showing of 'the general' for what seemed like a few minutes which later turned out to be hours.

after that i borrowed a bunch of his videos from the library and another friend of mine and i would watch them on friday afternoons; i am quite sure we were one of the only girls at my silly high school to be watching black and white films on fridays after school...

his work is charming, delightful, etc, & i'm always so enamoured with his stunts & the adorable characters he plays, although i have done a little research and know that characters are all they ever were...

anyway, i'm sure you don't need me rambling on like so! watch his films/shorts if you haven't already - i'm sure there must be keaton fans in here somewhere.

"I have called Keaton the most silent of silent film comedians without quite explaining why. The silence was related to another deeply rooted quality -- that immobility, that sense of alert repose, we have so often seen in him. Keaton could run like a jackrabbit and, in almost every feature film, he did. He could stunt like Lloyd, as honestly and even more dangerously. His pictures are motion pictures. Yet, though there is a hurricane eternally raging around him, and though he is often caught up in it, Keaton's constant drift is toward the quiet at the hurricane's eye."

-- Walter Kerr,
The Silent Clowns

photos from http://www.cinepad.com/busterk.htm & http://silentgents.com/PKeaton.html
lots of links available at http://www.ida.liu.se/~juhta/buster/

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oh! i would really love to see some of his movies, all of the pictures you posted are charming...i dont think i have ever seen a film with him in it....could you recommend one for me? i will netflix it, your post has captivated me and now i must see one of his films!

(that last one is especially endearing i must say....)
'the general' is a full-length silent movie and by far my absolute favourite. he has a lot of shorts (20 minutes or so), so if you get more than just 'the general' i would suggest watching the shorts first purely for your better enjoyment of all his films. i'd also recommend 'sherlock jr' (short, & the ending - last two minutes or so - is incredibly adorable) and 'our hospitality' (short, and possibly "with" 'sherlock jr' because when i borrowed it it was on the same tape).
oh, the film stills are very pretty!

i should also like to mention a certain German named Karl Valentin (1882-1948). If you enjoy Keaton and Chaplin, this man is supposed to be the pioneer of silent film comedies.

Perhaps you'd like to try him too, i'm sure you won't be disappointed! :)

oh, thank you for that! i'll be sure to look him up.
something that i meant to say but forgot....is that something i really love about all of the silent comedies i have seen (only charlie chaplin thus far)...is that despite being comedies, they have these absolutely heartbreaking moments in the midst of the comedy....they are by no means pure slapstick and those moments add a very poignant feel even to the really funny parts.
oh yes! precisely that; i couldn't put it in better words !!! (oh, & in various biographies of keaton that i have read it says that he and chaplin have been compared quite a bit and the "better" artist is in only the critic's point of view, because they are so wonderful in their own ways that there isn't a concensus, so if you liked chaplin you'll probably like keaton as well!)
i just watched 'the general' last night and i thought i should tell you....i loved it! it was so cute and buster keaton seems so shy and cute....i love the part where he is sad because his lady has rejected him and he sits on that bar that connects the wheels and goes up and down (sorry, my descriptive powers are awful here)

but yes, thank you for the recommendation!
i'm glad!!! and your descriptive powers were good enough, i remember that scene very well!!! :)