Fatal Footsteps (1926)
Article 5821 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Charles R. Bowers
Featuring Charles R. Bowers and Eddie Dunn
What it is: Slapstick comedy
A farmhand becomes obsessed with winning a Charleston-dancing competition.
I’m a bit disappointed by this short from Charley Bowers; it’s more into low-brow physical slapstick than it is in the stop-motion animation that sets him apart from the other silent comedians. Still, I do have to admire the man’s energy; since he spends almost the entire short cavorting around and rehearsing his dance moves, it must have been an exhausting film to make. The special effects do come in in the second half of the short when he converts a pair of roller skates into mechanical dancing shoes, which are capable of going out and dancing on their own without him. Still, even these touches don’t quite compensate for the low-brow shenanigans that fill the rest of the film.