Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Sight & Sound Challenge: The Last Laugh (1924)

Film: The Last Laugh (167/250) 
First Time/Rewatch: First Time

Hmm, I don't know. I think I'd heard so much about this film that I felt like I'd already seen it, and it didn't really offer any new surprises. The story is simple: an old man who works as a doorman at a fancy hotel is demoted and he loses his livelihood. So simple, in fact, that there are virtually no title cards. It sounds interesting in theory, but the reality for me is that I had a really hard time staying awake. There were definitely some interesting visuals, not unlike the ones from director F.W. Murnau's later films Faust (1926) and Sunrise (1927), but I definitely prefer those other films. There was nothing inherently wrong with The Last Laugh, it was charming in its own way, but I think it would have worked better as a short film. At an hour and a half, this film felt like it crawled. This film has been incredibly well-reviewed over the years, so it seems I'm in the minority, but see it and decide for yourself. At any rate, it was fun getting lost in the whimsical ending. 

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