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The Play House (1921)

After waking up from his wacky dream, a theater stage hand inadvertently causes havoc everywhere he works.

Directors:

Edward F. Cline (as Eddie Cline), Buster Keaton (as 'Buster' Keaton)

Writers:

Buster Keaton (as 'Buster' Keaton), Edward F. Cline (as Eddie Cline)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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More Like This 

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Buster Keaton ... Audience / Orchestra / Mr. Brown - First Minstrel / Second Minstrel / Stagehand (as 'Buster' Keaton)
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Storyline

Portraying more than twenty characters at once--including lively stage actors, an attentive audience, an orchestra, and an entire nine-member minstrel act--Buster Keaton pushes the boundaries of technical artistry and film trickery, in a time when effects really were special. With this in mind--after waking up from a delightful vaudeville dream sequence--Buster realises that he still is the play house's humble general factotum, and he must keep the show up and running amid delusion and disorder, identical twin sisters, Zouave guards, and a rampant orangutan on the loose. But, can a mere gopher yearn for recognition, and perhaps, love? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He apes the ape as no one else can ape him (Print Ad- Wheeling Intelligencer, ((Wheeling WVA)) 22 April 1922)

Genres:

Short | Comedy | Fantasy

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

24 September 1921 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Playhouse See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD) | (1995 Film Preservation Associates print)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The multiple Busters on screen together were created in the camera, using a special lens with shutters to film only a portion of the scene at a time. Buster would perform one part, then the cameraman would crank the film back and open another shutter to film another part. A banjo player with a metronome helped Buster Keaton to perform precisely at the right time for each take. See more »

Goofs

Sometimes the background is visible through the elbow of Male Audience Member Buster, revealing the double-exposure technique used to film two Buster Keatons sitting side by side. See more »

Quotes

Man in Audience: This fellow Keaton seems to be the whole show.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The version shown on the American Movie Classics channel was copyrighted in 1995 by Film Preservation Associates and had a music soundtrack arranged by Robert Israel. It ran 23 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in An American in Paris (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

 
This fellow Keaton seems to be the whole show.
13 September 2018 | by SendiTolverSee all my reviews

First part of the movie is amazing surreal scene where Buster Keaton performs all the parts himself. Then he wakes up and we learn that it was all his dream, but when suddenly some workmen start to tear down the walls of the bedroom, the viewer is momentarily taken back into the dream, until we finally learn that Buster Keaton was just an ordinary stagehand that took his nap on the stage, and the room was just a decoration. From there on Buster continues his ordinary workday with hilarious mishaps. The film is pretty tame considering the part of neck breaking stunts, but the more amazing is the opening sequence where Buster Keaton is the whole show. Wonderful movie that shows how inventive as a director Buster Keaton was even without performing any amazing stunt work.


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