Larry Semon in “The Perfect Clown”


Today is the anniversary of the release date of the Larry Semon feature length comedy The Perfect Clown (1925).

The plot concerns a young clerk who is charged with the task of delivering $10,000 to the bank to be deposited. Finding the bank closed, he is placed in the nerve-wracking predicament of hanging onto the money overnight. This is complicated by the fact that he can’t go home; ironically, he doesn’t have the back rent to give his landlady. He winds up spending the night in a spooky barn during a thunder storm: there’s any good comedian’s third act right there. The Perfect Clown privileges gags over character, but we do keep to a single plot with a minimum of digression, which is more than can be said for many of Semons shorts. Directed by frequent Harold Lloyd collaborator Fred Newmeyer, the film also features usual Semon stock company members such as Dorothy Dwan, Oliver Hardy, Frank Alexander and Spencer Bell.

For more on silent and slapstick comedy please see my new book Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from etc etc etc


To find out more about show business past and presentconsult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famousavailable at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.


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