28 April 2006 | MartinHafer
very good story, not quite as many laughs
This is a very good Buster Keaton film. However, some might be put off by the scarcity of pratfalls and belly laughs compared to many of his other efforts. That's because this film is much more plot driven and character driven than most silent comedies--and that works well for me, though you might miss the more acrobatic and violent character he plays in his shorts and in some of his full-length ones.
Buster plays a spoiled rich young man who really needs to be toughened up--so his dad tells him to go camping. The next segment is probably the funniest, as it cuts to a "wilderness" scene--complete with a butler, tub, poster bed, and all the other modern conveniences (that's the way I'd like to camp!). While "camping" he meets a nice girl and he is smitten. Instead of Buster going to propose, he sends his butler--who immediately knows her dad will say "no" because he wants a virile, more "studly" son-in-law. So, the butler panics and says that Buster is the famous boxer Alfred "Battling" Butler! Now, the two men do have the same name and are roughly the same size--but that's about the only similarity. Daddy gives his hearty approval and Buster is married. But, when the real Butler wins the title, Buster has a hard time pretending any longer. Later, the real Butler retires and Buster takes his place--going to training camp and working for a title defense! You'll have to tune in to see what happens next, as this only takes you through about half the film--watch it and enjoy.