Sherlock Jr. (1924)

Not Rated   |    |  Action, Comedy, Romance


Sherlock Jr. (1924) Poster

A film projectionist longs to be a detective, and puts his meagre skills to work when he is framed by a rival for stealing his girlfriend's father's pocketwatch.


8.2/10
33,920

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  • Buster Keaton, SHERLOCK, JR., Metro-Goldwyn, 1924, **I.V.
  • Buster Keaton in Sherlock Jr. (1924)
  • Buster Keaton in Sherlock Jr. (1924)
  • Buster Keaton in Sherlock Jr. (1924)
  • Buster Keaton and Joe Keaton in Sherlock Jr. (1924)
  • Sherlock Jr. (1924)

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16 September 2006 | didi-5
9
| marvellous and inventive
This Keaton classic is both funny and extremely clever in its construction. Our hero is a cleaner but dreams of becoming a detective, always with his nose buried in a book on the subject.

The first third of the film is much like any other comedy. There are lost dollar bills, things sticking to other things, something stolen, mistaken identities. Our heroine is introduced in a charming scene where they seem terrified to hold hands. Her father is played by Buster's father Joe Keaton, who would appear in many of his son's films.

There's a mustachioed cad with slick hair and a sharp suit who is after the girl, a cartoon baddie who the audience instinctively knows deserves a hiss and not a cheer.

It is in Junior's other job as a cinema projectionist that the film comes alive. We are watching the film he has set up and then, suddenly, he is part of the action. In a sequence of great inventiveness, we see the film within a film changing scenes and watch with delight as the character adapts to each situation and surrounding.

Sherlock Jr is very funny but is also unusual and, in comparison with other comedies of the period, ahead of its time. It includes some excellent stunts that are the equal of anything done by Harold Lloyd in the same period, and, although it has a very short running time, manages to develop a good storyline throughout.

Justly feted as a masterpiece of silent comedy, Sherlock Jr represented one of the peaks of Buster Keaton's cinematic career. It is a film worth watching and has stood up well today.

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