6.9/10
2,204
20 user 12 critic

The Blacksmith (1922)

Buster Keaton shoes horses and repairs cars, with mixed results.

Directors:

Buster Keaton, Malcolm St. Clair (as Mal. St. Clair)

Writers:

Buster Keaton, Malcolm St. Clair (as Mal. St. Clair)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Buster Keaton ... Blacksmith's Assistant (as 'Buster' Keaton)
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Storyline

Buster clowns around in a blacksmith's shop until he and the smithy get in a fight which sends the smithy to jail. Buster helps several customers with horses, then destroys a Rolls Royce while fixing the car parked next to it. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...and the muscles of his brawny arms, were as strong as rubber bands.

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 July 1922 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El herrero 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 white mare that appears in the movie is the same animal as the broken-down old horse that pulls the wagon in Cops (1922); she had dropped an unexpected foal in the interim. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Comic Kino-Eye (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Shoeing horses
1 November 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Buster Keaton was nothing short of a genius, in comedy or for anything for that matter. Not just because of his humour hilarious, his charm endearing and his physical comedy enough to make many envious, but also because of how he was never afraid to take risks (his most daring work making the jaw drop) and because he was an unparallelled master when it came to deadpan, a lot of people struggle to do it well but Keaton was brilliant at it.

He did do a lot better than 'The Blacksmith', whether short films or feature films. When it comes to his short films, there is a preference for the likes of 'The Scarecrow', 'The Goat' and 'The Boat', which like a lot of other Keaton outings were much funnier, more imaginative, more daring and played to Keaton's strengths more. His physical comedy has been better served elsewhere as well, to me at least. That sounds like 'The Blacksmith' is bad. Actually, it is definitely worth watching and is well done, just a little underwhelming by inevitably high Keaton standards.

'The Blacksmith' is very thinly plotted and even as a short film it feels a little over-stretched. The romantic subplot is (for a Keaton short and feature film) uncharacteristically bland and feels padded.

For Keaton, 'The Blacksmith' is pretty tame. The pace is not as breakneck compared to most of Keaton's work and the physical comedy not near as daring or inventive. The gags are definitely well constructed and bring a smile to the face but they don't rise above pleasantly amusing.

As said though, this does not mean that 'The Blacksmith' is bad. It is a good looking short film, not among the most technically advanced of Keaton's but it's not primitive either. As said, the gags are pleasant and amusing and are timed well. It is not dull generally, not breakneck but there is energy, and there is an easy-going charm and natural likeability.

Keaton has great comic timing and is easy to endear to, his deadpan "Great Stone Face" acting style, expressive and nuanced as always, having not lost its appeal.

Overall, nice enough but not exceptional. For Keaton, this could have been better. 7/10


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