Wednesday, May 29, 2013

From President Wilson's Daybook: May 29, 1923

On this date in 1923, Woodrow and Edith Wilson screened the comedy Safety Last! in their library, using the 1922 Graphoscope film projector gifted to them from Douglas Fairbanks. Several local theater owners would send Wilson the film reels since they knew the former President was an avid fan of the movies; Washington’s Metropolitan Theater sent Safety Last! to the Wilsons after it had finished playing on May 26.

The star of Safety Last! was Harold Lloyd. Lloyd, alongside Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin, was one of the most popular film comedians of the 1920s. He was best known for his "Glasses" character, an eager young go-getter whose very eagerness often resulted in many comic mishaps. Safety Last!  tells the story of a salesclerk at the De Vore Department Store, played by Harold Lloyd, and his attempts to win $1000 as well as to impress his girlfriend, Mildred. In a very funny sequence, he ends up dangling off of the face of a clock high above the city streets; it became one of the most famous images from the silent film era.

Here is the trailer for Safety Last!, just newly restored by Janus Films earlier this year. Please share with us what you think in the comments below (and definitely consider watching Safety Last!)!

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