I wanted to share a few images and film clips that I came across recently. Many of the film clips came from a YouTube channel created by film collector Tommie Hicks, Jr.
Here is Harry Langdon featured in promotional stills for Flickering Youth (1924).
In 1933, old-time film stars gathered to promote a documentary called March of the Movies (formerly titled The Film Parade). The comedy stars included in this group are Kate Price, Bud Duncan, Flora Finch and Ben Turpin.
Here is a lobby card for Hazel from Hollywood (1923), which was one of Dorothy Devore's most popular short comedies. When I wrote about Devore in Eighteen Comedians of Silent Film, it was my understanding that Hazel from Hollywood was a lost film. However, film critic Hal Erickson recently reported on Facebook that he got to see a print of Hazel at a film archive.
Lloyd Hamilton uses explosive ostrich eggs to battle savage tropical natives in his most highly acclaimed short comedy, Robinson Crusoe Ltd. (1921).
Lloyd Hamilton and Bud Duncan are up to their usual hijinks in Ham and the Jitney Bus (1915).
Sid Smith flees a firing squad in an unnamed comedy. The scene was filmed on Universal's Hunchback of Notre Dame set.
I overlooked a couple of flying car comedies in an earlier post. Jerry Lewis, as an alien from outer space, avoids rush hour traffic by causing his car to levitate in A Visit to a Small Planet (1960).
Bob Hope is trapped inside a rocket-powered flying truck in the spy spoof Call Me Bwana (1963).
I have always said that the Final Destination films owe a debt to silent film comedy. This scene from "Big Boy" comedy Kid Tricks (1927) could easily be reworked into a Final Destination death scene.
Director Charles Lamont kept the action moving quickly in Kid Tricks.
Hank Mann derives a uniquely absurd routine from an exceptionally long dress train in Hot Dogs (1920).
Let us take a look at two early comedy teams in film history. The first is Oscar and Conrad, comic Dutch characters played by Claude Cooper and Frank E. McNish. In this clip from Guiders (1916), Oscar and Conrad are attacked by a variety of animals as they work as tour guides in Florida.
This is Lyons and Moran struggling with a dilapidated jalopy in Give Her Gas (1918).
A popular vaudeville novelty act was Dronza, a mechanical talking head that answered questions from audience members. The audiences were amazed because they could detect no signs of ventriloquism. It seemed as if Dronza was actually talking on his own.
I found these lobby cards for Beery and Hatton features on an auction site.
This is a photo from a 1912 Edison comedy, Uncle Mun and the Minister. I believe that the actors are, from left to right, Edwin O'Connor, Arthur Housman, Fred I. Nankivel and Shirley Mason.
This screen capture from the1923 Sennett comedy Skylarking features Harry Gribbon riding a whale out to sea.
Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey are enjoying a joke at the expense of Edna May Oliver and Edgar Kennedy in the prison comedy Hold 'Em Jail (1923).