Rheingold Theatre (1953–1957)
8.1/10
55
2 user

The Awakening 

A minor bureaucratic functionary in a soulless totalitarian regime is ashamed of his tattered overcoat. He scrimps to save money for a new one, and the new one changes his life. He is ... See full summary »

Director:

Michael McCarthy

Writers:

Nikolay Gogol (story "The Cloak") (as Nikolai Gogol), Lawrence B. Marcus (teleplay) (as Larry Marcus)
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
Douglas Fairbanks Jr. ... Himself - Host
Buster Keaton ... The Man
James Hayter ... The Chief
Carl Jaffe Carl Jaffe ... The Tailor
Lynne Cole Lynne Cole ... The Girl
Geoffrey Keen ... The Supervisor
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Storyline

A minor bureaucratic functionary in a soulless totalitarian regime is ashamed of his tattered overcoat. He scrimps to save money for a new one, and the new one changes his life. He is suddenly respected, admired, and valued, and when the new coat is stolen, his life becomes worse than it was before. He goes against the bureaucracy in hopes of getting the government to help him get his coat, and discovers that he can no longer accept the world he lives in as it is. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

Drama

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 July 1954 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Another statistic
22 May 2017 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

No jokes, no gags are in this half hour teleplay from the Rheingold Theater so this is one atypical Buster Keaton vehicle. A host of the program Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. informs us that this is the first time Keaton ever took on a completely dramatic part.

This could have and maybe should have been an episode for the Twilight Zone. In a world modeled on 1984 Keaton is a bureaucrat in a state where all has been reduced to numbers. He barely scrapes by on the meager salary, but he's also in need of a new winter coat. The one he has is in tatters and won't make it through a cold cold winter.

He gets his coat, but then it is robbed from him. After a lot of loyal service to the state he can't get any satisfaction for his plight. No one cares he was robbed his robbery is just now entered as another statistic.

How this is resolved is for you to see, but there's no humor in this teleplay from one of the great silent screen comedians. A grim portrait of a soulless future.


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