TIME FOR COMEDY. Other silent movie stars, even crowd-pleasers like Chaplin or Fairbanks, have to be viewed with nostalgia. But not Buster Keaton. His utter lack of sentimentality and knack for daring physical comedy make him an instantly enthralling figure—even to the most TV-jaded 5 (or 25) year-old. Look for the definitive, restored & scored versions on the Kino label, and start with these:

Sherlock Jr./Our HospitalityFirst, his most technically dazzling comedy, in which he’s a projectionist who walks straight into his movie. On the same tape/dvd, a Hatfield-McCoy comedy that includes perhaps his most amazing stunt, an acrobatic rescue over a waterfall.

The General—Confederate Buster steals his beloved train back from Union saboteurs in this beautifully authentic comedy epic. Kino’s includes the short The Playhouse, in which camera trickery turns him into an entire vaudeville troupe, orchestra—and audience.

Seven Chances—Buster has to get married by 7:00 to inherit a fortune. Climaxes in pure surreal hilarity, as Keaton is madly pursued by both an army of angry brides and an avalanche of giant boulders.

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