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  • Back in the silent days, Alice Howell was a star--though today she and her comedies are mostly forgotten. There aren't a lot of them available any more--so it's hard to say how representative "Under a Spell" is of her work. As for my opinion, I thought it was pretty lame.

    Alice thinks that her husband has been cheating on her when she sees a lady bandit breaking in their home. He is innocent--and the lady is a guy in disguise. But Alice doesn't know that and hires a wacky hypnotist to get him to tell the truth about his affairs. Unfortunately, by mistake one of them now is convinced he's a gorilla--and the results seem a bit lame. And, curiously, the real gorilla in this film is an orangutan. Did people back in 1925 not know the difference? The humor is VERY broad and if you can look past this, it might be worth seeing. I just thought it wasn't very funny. You know it's a bit of a letdown when the funniest thing is Howell's trademark hair.
  • boblipton19 April 2020
    A lady burglar breaks into their home and leaves a hat. Alice Howell thinks husband Neely Smith has brought a girl friend home, so she hires a hypnotist to get him to tell her all about it. The hypnotist demonstrates his powers by making Smith think he's a monkey. And they're off.

    There are some good comedy gags here, and Smith demonstrates his ability to juggle, but it's not a terribly distinguished short comedy. Miss Howell was losing interest in the movies. She had been plowing the money she and husband Dick SMith (who directed this movie) into real estate. As one of her descendants said -- her daughter Yvonne married George Stevens -- when her income from real estate got to be larger than her earnings as a performer, she quit the show business.