Ask Father (1919)

Sub-Genres - Romantic Comedy  |   Countries - USA  |  
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There are a huge number of great gags in this Harold Lloyd single-reeler. Lloyd was two-and-a-half years away from making features, but the infinite potential of his "glasses" character is already obvious here. He plays a boy who is in love with a bored, wealthy girl, showering her with dozens of bouquets and boxes of candy. But when he proposes, all she does is shrug, "Ask my father." This is easier said than done -- her father's schedule is so hectic that his office has bouncers. Lloyd nevertheless persists in his efforts to see him, no matter how many times he gets thrown out. Eventually a pretty, sympathetic secretary (Bebe Daniels) begins placing a pillow down on the spot where he's most likely to land. Lloyd tries everything to talk to the father, from donning costumes to prop guns to climbing a building (shades of Safety Last here). Then just as he gets his chance, the daughter runs off and marries someone else. But the secretary is still there, so he asks her, "Say -- how busy is YOUR father?" When she reveals that her father is dead, love blooms.