Buncoed Stage Johnnie (1908)

aka Pour l’etoile S.V.P.
Article 4841 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 6-4-2015
Directed by Georges Melies
Cast unknown
Country: France
What it is: Comedy

A star-struck old man gives a stage hand a bouquet to give to an actress, but the stage hand gives it to a fat cleaning lady instead. Comedy ensues.

This movie only exists in fragmentary form, but since it’s the final part of the short, I decided to go ahead and cover it. Fortunately, there’s some opening text to explain the action from the missing footage. This is not to say that it still isn’t a bit confusing; the fragment opens right in the middle of a confusing comic bit that had me scratching my head. After that, the short proceeds to the punch line of the short, but it’s pretty obvious and not really all that funny. More to the point, perhaps, is the issue of fantastic content. It’s listed in the Walt Lee guide, but without an explanation. I suspect that it got in because the story involved a “trick”, but the “trick” in question here (the stage hand’s joke on the old man) isn’t of the fantastic variety. Unless there’s something hidden in the missing footage (which seems unlikely), I’m just going to have to classify this one as a false alarm.


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