Retrospective documentary tracing the development of moving pictures.
Reel 4. Check copyright for this material.
Charlie Chaplin - shot of Chaplin in one of his earliest film appearances, wearing a top hat and tails. We then see him in "The Perfect Lady." A woman puts her fingers in her ears as another snores. A man flirts with a young woman in a park whilst his wife and daughter sleep on a park bench. Chaplin approaches and walks over a lawn sprinkler thinking that it is raining. he catches a woman's leg with his cane. Various slapstick business ensues. He sits next to the woman on the park bench whilst the other man is buying a bottle of beer. Charlie catches her leg again then massages her foot. The other man gets annoyed and smashes the bottle over Charlie's head. He falls off the bench. Two other men come and sit on the bench. Charlie sips some of their beer whilst they aren't looking. One of the men pokes his cane in Charlie's stomach and Charlie spits some of the beer out. More funny business ensues. They fight (lots of sound effects over the top). Meanwhile the errant husband has been blindfolded by the flirty women. Charlie takes his beer then leads him along by the side of a lake. Charlie measures the depth of the lake with his cane. Finds an appropriate spot then pushes him in. A policeman comes up behind Charlie and he is pulled into the lake with Charlie's cane. The two women sleeping on the bench are approached by Charlie and he chats them up. They take him home. He is invited into the parlour for tea but sits on a feathered hat which attaches itself to his backside. Charlie has fun with some donuts. The husband and friend arrive home to find Charlie in the parlour with the wife and daughter. Charlie is invited to meet the father. Fight ensues, much slapstick and melodramatic acting. Daughter sprays him with a soda siphon and at some point he loses his trousers. He runs upstairs and finds himself in a ladies' dressing room. he takes the clothes off a dummy and puts them on. The daughter sees him, lifts up his skirt and laughs. "Now, to fool Papa." C/U of Charlie in drag (no moustache!). C/U of the daughter laughing. The daughter kisses Charlie and he looks embarrassed. Daughter introduces Charlie to the father. Charlie flirts with him. Much funny business. Charlie is a bit rough. The husband's friend decides to have a go too.
The daughter tells the mother what is going on. More slapstick goes on between Charlie and his new suitor. The husband gets cross and the two men fight over Charlie. Mother and daughter watch. The two men kiss each other by accident. Charlie takes a swig of whisky. The father accidentally pulls down Charlie's skirt to reveal mannish underwear. Wife goes to hit the husband with a rolling pin but hits Charlie instead. Charlie explains that he is in love with the daughter
Note: This seems to be the Chaplin film called "A Woman" made in 1915 although it seems a little short. The title given before the film here" The Perfect Lady" has been added in 1938.
Pages are turned in a book proclaiming a history of 100 years of moving pictures (although the film was only made in 1938!). The pages turn telling the story of how the moving picture has become a "moving mirror'. Claims are made such as: "By the miracle of the cinema you are to-day transported across the limits of time and space." The pioneers of the past are praised and the film has been made as a tribute to them.
End. See other reels.
Note: Catalogue summary from the National Film and Television Archive shows that their print is more complete. Items they list appearing which are missing from our print include" Friese-Green, illustrated song slides, stencil colour fashion film, more Chaplin footage and Bombs and Boobs - a Mutt and Jeff animation. Material in this film is from the Will Day collection at Bois D'Arcy. See paper record of NFTVA summary in documentation files.
Note: sound effects are out of synch.