Oh boy do I have a treat for you today! Sometimes it takes a little digging around, but there’s a wealth of great stuff on youtube to share with your kids. I’ve discovered some classic old movie moments from the comedy masters for you. If you’re wondering about how to introduce your children to the look and the style of silent movies and early talkies, short clips are fantastic.
1. Charlie Chaplin – “Dance of the Dinner Rolls” from The Gold Rush (1925)
Sweet and simple. Entry level viewing for the brilliance that is Chaplin.
2. Marx Bros. – Mirror Scene from Duck Soup (1933)
This has been copied a thousand times since, and it’s likely even Groucho and company were borrowing this routine from someone else, in the old vaudeville tradition, but nobody does it better.
3. Buster Keaton – Chase Scene from Seven Chances (1925)
Ah, there was a time when people did their own stunts! Buster Keaton never ceases to astonish me.
4. Laurel & Hardy – Pie Fight
I’ve never been a huge fan of the pie-in-the-face gag myself, but this is a pretty epic example of the genre. And it all starts with a banana peel!
5. Abbott and Costello – “Who’s On First?” from The Naughty Nineties (1945)
And finally, something a little more ‘talkie’… This routine delighted my 5-year-old and my 9-year-old nephew this summer. The writing, the delivery, the timing… perfection.