Pool Sharks (1915)

Genres - Comedy  |   Sub-Genres - Slapstick  |   Countries - USA  |  
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W.C. Fields filmed Pool Sharks, his first film, while he was appearing in the Ziegfeld Follies in New York City. Fields and his rival (Bud Ross) are both in love with the same girl. They are constantly fighting over her. After disrupting a picnic, they decide to settle their dispute with a game of pool. After some amazing pool shots (via trick photography), they end up breaking pool sticks over each other's heads and throwing pool balls at each other. In the end, the girl spurns them both. This film is a disappointment to those who know Fields' character from later films, with Fields wearing a fake-looking moustache and acting more like Charlie Chaplin than his later, well-known personality from sound comedies -- though he does dump a small child out of a chair so that he can steal it. The pool shots are done with stop-motion photography because his trick pool table was used on stage every night and could not be moved to the movie studio for the filming. Fields would make one more short and then would not work in movies again until 1924.

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Keywords

love, love-triangle, pool [billiards], rival