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Author Topic: Oh Doctor! (1917) - Roscoe Arbuckle and Buster Keaton  (Read 381 times)

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Offline Paul Pain

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Oh Doctor! (1917) - Roscoe Arbuckle and Buster Keaton
« on: February 24, 2017, 08:00:42 PM »
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  • http://www.busterkeaton.com/Films/A04_Oh_Doctor.html
    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6e/Oh_Doctor_1917_FATTY_ARBUCKLE_BUSTER_KEATON.webm

    Watch OH DOCTOR in the link above

    This is certainly a strange entry in the film series thus far.  Roscoe is a doctor who falls for a vamp while at the races with his wife and overgrown manchild son.  He loses his dough, gets vamped, and all around gets abused by his wife.

    Roscoe and Buster are hilarious together here, with sections clearly written for Buster as we love him.  Roscoe is his usual sheepish self.  The rest is just... weird.  Al St. John seems like he is sonambulating. The Alices are stiff in their manners and acting.

    Roscoe pushing Buster is funny.  Men being picked on by women they would never, in their right mind, marry and essentially being subjected to spousal abuse is rarely, if ever, funny.  Vampire women don't really work either.  I shan't spoil the highlight, but it involves Roscoe in a cop's uniform.

    5/10 [poke] [poke] [poke] [poke] [poke]
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    Offline Umbrella Sam

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    Re: Oh Doctor! (1917) - Roscoe Arbuckle and Buster Keaton
    « Reply #1 on: February 24, 2017, 09:58:37 PM »
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  • I agree that this one is very strange compared to the previous shorts, but that does at least allow for some variety. The strangest part is easily Keaton himself, basically playing a Stan Laurel type man child before Laurel himself made it famous. I think it's hilarious because of how out of character it is for him and he gets thrown around a decent amount.

    Arbuckle himself does good in terms of his comedy as well. I like his method of using his car as a way to promote his office and he does have some good reactions like when his disguise is blown by Al St. John.

    Arbuckle's character is much more abrasive than usual and unfortunately I feel like the short partly suffers as a result. In addition, I must agree that both the spousal abuse and flirting scenes are very uninteresting as well. However, I did feel like overall this short did have more funny moments than HIS WEDDING NIGHT and does stand out somewhat due to both its humor and strangeness, so I'll rate it a little higher.

    6 out of 10

    Offline Big Chief Apumtagribonitz

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    Re: Oh Doctor! (1917) - Roscoe Arbuckle and Buster Keaton
    « Reply #2 on: February 25, 2017, 10:20:43 AM »
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  • Again here, the most humor is in the acrobatics, and Buster is the best acrobat, though St John is no slouch.  Arbuckle does make friends with the camera.  With him the fourth wall is very flimsy indeed, when it exists at all.

    Offline metaldams

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    Re: Oh Doctor! (1917) - Roscoe Arbuckle and Buster Keaton
    « Reply #3 on: February 26, 2017, 04:16:50 PM »
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  •       The main thing of interest to me in this short, which is only interesting in hindsight and would not be interesting upon release, is how animated Buster is in this one.  He plays a child who gets pushed around a lot and does these wonderful acrobatic falls.  I love the way Roscoe pushes Buster, making him somersault on a table and land perfectly seated in a chair.  We all know Buster can take a fall, so what is most interesting is the cries and hamfisted mugging Buster does.  The Arbuckle films are the only films where he's not deadpan in his demeanor, but OH, DOCTOR! is easily Keaton at his most ham fisted.  That to me is the standout of this film.

          The rest of it, not much else to say.  Well made in terms of story, and I agree with Big Chief for the most part that most of the humor lies in the acrobatics.  I also must echo the thoughts about the car scene being good as well as the witty ending of how Arbuckle got the money, but the majority of this is good, if not great standard slapstick.  The chase is like comfort food, but again, not quite at the level of Buster and Harold chases of the 20's.  A shame Arbuckle truly never got a chance to compete with those guys, it would of been interesting to see how he developed.  Want to add the idea of injuring people as a doctor to try to build more patients was done in a much more developed way in Harold Lloyd's classic  NEVER WEAKEN.

    7/10