Thursday, August 15, 2019

Helen's Babies (1924)

Harry Burton (Edward Everett Horton) is the author of a popular book on modern child-rearing methods, who is called on to babysit his two nieces (Baby Peggy and Jean Carpenter). The problem is, Uncle Harry is a life-long bachelor and, in fact, knows nothing about raising children, so chaos predictably ensues.

This was the first of the Baby Peggy films I've seen, and I can see why she was such a big star in the early '20s. She has an undeniable screen presence and is fascinating to watch, commanding attention as she goes through extended bits of business such as trying to fit a bunch of celluloid collars back in to their box or trying to retrieve her doll dangling precariously from a tree branch

It's also fun to watch Edward Everett Horton in a silent film, knowing his distinctive voice and mannerisms that made him such a reliable and welcome presence in so many comedies of the 1930s. Based on the popular 1876 book by John Habberton.

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