Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Though conceived and executed as a silent film, The Circus Kid was outfitted with a sound prolog and music and sound-effects track so it could pass muster as a talkie. Pint-sized Frankie Darro, no mean acrobat in real life, stars as a preteen circus performer. Darro becomes an unwilling sidelines observer of a romantic triangle involving equestrienne Helene Costello, lion-tamer Joe E. Brown (in a rare dramatic performance) and circus newcomer Sam Nelson. The climax finds Brown being mauled to death by his own lions (a sequence that sparked Brown's first real-life heart attack-though not because of the lions, who were relatively benign). One critic summed up The Circus Kid with a terse "You can sleep through it."
affection, animal, beast, blessing, carnival, courage, death, escape, lion, love-triangle, man, orphan, rival, troupe