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The Slappiest Days of Our Lives
A young Peter Sellers voices this compilation film of silent slapstick footage, featuring Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and Laurel and Hardy.
Director: Claude Accursi
Adelphi Films’ compilation of silent slapstick films started like as a French assemblage, Ca c'est du cinema, with a new voiceover added by a young Peter Sellers. Bringing together hilarious footage featuring Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, the film is trailed with an introductory title-card signed by Adelphi's Arthur Dent, declaring it a tribute to comedy pioneer Mack Sennett (although it's not just confined to his productions).
Dent hired a young Peter Sellers - already seen in two Adelphi productions - to serve as narrator. A devotee of silent comedy as well as a gifted radio voice man, Sellers was the ideal choice, and his mimicking of Stan Laurel is uncannily convincing. The film was heavily marketed around the inclusion of Laurel and Hardy, who remained a huge draw in the 1950s, although mostly they’re seen separately here, in films made before they teamed up. Please note that footage is also included of blackface duo Moran and Mack ; a routine clearly out-of-step and offensive to modern audiences.