5.2/10
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10 user 4 critic

Triple Trouble (1918)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Short | 11 August 1918 (USA)
As Colonel Nutt is experimenting with explosives, a new janitor is joining his household. The inept janitor proceeds to make life difficult for the rest of staff. Meanwhile, a foreign agent... See full summary »

Directors:

Charles Chaplin (uncredited), Leo White (uncredited)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Charles Chaplin ... Charlie - The Janitor
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Storyline

As Colonel Nutt is experimenting with explosives, a new janitor is joining his household. The inept janitor proceeds to make life difficult for the rest of staff. Meanwhile, a foreign agent arrives at the house in hopes of getting Col. Nutt's latest invention. The inventor throws him out, so the agent then employs a thug to get the formula. When police head to the Nutt home to start an investigation, a complicated fracas ensues. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

police | inventor | explosion | See All (3) »

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

11 August 1918 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Charlie's Triple Trouble See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is composed of fragments filmed, but not used, in two of Charles Chaplin's movies, namely Work (1915) and Police (1916), and footage from a third never released film, "Life". See more »

Goofs

The butler, cook, and thief are obviously played by different actors in the non-Chaplin scenes. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the 1990s, Chaplin's comedy Police was restored to its full length, reintegrating footage that had been cut out of the original film by Essanay and later used in Triple Trouble. The restored Police was unveiled as part of the documentary _Chaplin Puzzle, The (1992) (TV)_. See more »

Connections

Features Police (1916) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A troubling patchwork
19 June 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Am a big fan of Charlie Chaplin, have been for over a decade now. Many films and shorts of his are very good to masterpiece, and like many others consider him a comedy genius and one of film's most important and influential directors.

Made when he had actually left Mutual in a period where the style that was starting to evolve with Essanay was found and setting one up for his prime, 'Triple Trouble' instead feels like a misfire from Keystone. Which is not a good position to be in when Chaplin had come on such a long way since then by this point. It is a patchwork of three of his previous films made and released during inferior (so fledgling and adolescence) periods and does it very cheaply. Have just read that Chaplin didn't authorise the making of 'Triple Trouble' and that is hardly surprising as there is a reeking of studio interference feel here. He had really matured by this point and it was not something that he would do to his films.

Chaplin himself is fine, Edna Purviance is charming, Billy Armstrong amuses and the chemistry works. Can't fault the performances here.

There are parts that raise a smile and the film doesn't look too bad in photography and settings.

However, the storytelling is disjointed and confused, close to incoherent even (something that rarely is used for criticising the not so good efforts from Chaplin, this is the first work actually of his when reviewing them where incoherence has been used as a criticism). The patchwork approach to it makes everything choppy and the scenes included from previous work are like scrappy fragments with less than flowing editing and little relevance to each other. There is definitely a more-than-one short film in one feel here with the utilisation of those three and that is essentially what 'Triple Trouble' is. And it certainly does not feel like a short film but more an unnecessary "cheater". The hodgepodge of additional scenes fares even worse.

Furthermore, it made it difficult to appreciate or be amused by the humour, none of the content being close to Chaplin's best work, even when they were from efforts released not long before the material already feels old, and vastly inferior even to everything he did at Mutual. Plus even though his Keystone period was very variable, none of the work during that period had the problem of being unnecessary. A lot of the content reeks of incompleteness where gags were not cooked all the way through or finished properly, and everything feels old and tired. Even the continuity is a mess.

Overall, a big misfire but not one that can be put at Chaplin's door when he had nothing to do with it. 4/10 Bethany Cox


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