(1923)4.5Lucia BozzolaThough it was not his first multi-reel movie, Buster Keaton hit his feature-length stride with this period comedy. Set in the carefully recreated 1831 South and shot on location near Lake Tahoe, the film turned the legendary feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys (re-named the Canfields and the McKays) into a send-up of Southern politeness. Two exterior sequences became vintage Keaton. Precisely duplicating one of the first-ever trains (the "Stephenson Rocket") and hiring his vaudevillian father to play the engineer, Keaton turned the crudeness of early train travel into a dreamlike and hilarious trip southward over rough yet beautiful forested terrain. And the final river rescue showcased Keaton's agility, as he snatches his beloved (played by then-wife Natalie Talmadge) from a waterfall; it also inadvertently revealed the risks of Keaton's drive for authenticity, as he almost drowned on camera. The potentially lethal work paid off, as Our Hospitality became a box office hit and confirmed Keaton's talent for integrating comedy into a larger narrative rather than simply stringing together gags.