Jolly Cinema > 17:00


Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline
Introduced by

Cecilia Cenciarelli

Piano accompaniment by

Neil Brand

Preceded by unseen footage shot at the Chaplin Studios in 1953
Commented by Kate Guyonvarch (Association Chaplin)


Friday 28/06/2019


Original version with subtitles


Film Notes

In My Wife’s Relations, Buster Keaton has achieved comedy, pungent, vulgar comedy, wherein the vulgarity has vital power, the nutriment of first-rate Roquefort cheese. […]
Here is vulgarity, working-class vulgarity, people of bad manners, as the phrase goes, people whose behavior is far from such, beyond words, without pedigree, except among the animals of the barns and the health that goes with what Ezra Pound calls “the unkillable infants of the poor”.
A little like Frank Norris’ McTeague, people are the dummies, mummies and rummies that shamble, scramble and slide on their bottom ends across the flickers of this picture.
This is the nearest approach this reviewer has witnessed to the master handling of Charles Chaplin in presentation of hu­man comics, with massive overtones and rapid implications. There will be those say­ing Charlie is a little schoolmaster show­ing them how to better find themselves in the pantomimic art science of the cinema. And there will be others who say otherwise.
The main point is that Buster Keaton’s My Wife’s Relations is a hummer of a comic two reeler.

Carl Sandburg, The Movies Are: Carl Sandburg’s Film Reviews and Essays 1920-1928,
Lake Claremont Press, Chicago 2000

Cast and Credits

Scen.: Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline. F.: Elgin Lessley. M.: Buster Keaton. Scgf.: Fred Gabourie. Int.: Buster Keaton (the husband), Kate Price (the wife), Monte Collins (the father-in-law), Joe Roberts, Tom Wilson, Harry Madison, Wheezer Dell (the wife’s brothers). Prod.: Joseph M. Schenck. DCP. D.: 24’. Bn.