Film: 2391

Feature Comedy | 1920 | Silent | B/W


Stan Laurel solo house building and destroying.
Army parade of six soldiers, a sergeant and an officer. Parade dismissed. Stan Laurel wears army ‘scout’ type hat, and vest. He stands in front of a tent and dries himself with a towel. He attempts to brush his teeth with big brush. Sergeant arrives and shouts at him – kicks him up the backside. He rejoins the marching parade trying to dress as he goes, but gets knocked over. Men rush into tent. Presumed fight in tent, seen from the outside. In front of a parade, soldier approaches officer, salutes and gives him a written message. Stan and sergeant emerge from tent and run into parade. Stan is discharged. Outside a fenced off place of work, Stan stands around looking lost. A wealthy man drives up and talks to Stan. He appears to take him under his wing and walks off with him. They walk through gate. In office, boss who wears monocle introduces Stan to girl sitting at desk marked ‘Information’. Boss walks to door marked ‘Manager’ and talks to boy sitting outside. They smile and he pats boy on shoulder. On a building site, Stan approaches a man who has crossed eyes to ask for directions. Man points. Other man is sawing and Stan stands on end of wood which springs up in air. Foreman takes Stan by collar as if to punch him, but stan hands him the letter. Foreman tells Stan to carry building materials up a ladder. Long sequence whereby Stan struggle up ladder with a role of material. He loses his hat and gets entwined in ladder. He eventually gets to the top, nearly loses his balance and drops the roll. He has to go down again. The foreman is exasperated.
In office young manager talks to secretary or receptionist. On roof, Stan puts roll down, its rolls off roof and lands on man’s head. He climbs up ladder as Stan climbs down other ladder. Man looks for Stan on roof. Then positions reverse and Stan climbs ladder as man goes down other ladder. Stan kicks a hammer off roof onto man who falls over. He is really angry now and starts to climb ladder. Stan has realised he’s lost his hammer which he needs to fix the roofing felt, so he climbs down ladder. Stan, back on the roof pushes felt until it rolls and knocks man off roof. On ground man is helped to his feet.
In office boss talks to secretary. On site man tries to pass long bendy plank to other, but misses. On roof, Stan is asphalting the roof. Boards get stuck to his feet and his sits down to remove them. More boards are stuck to his trousers. Very slapstick with bits of roof stuck to Stan. Stan walks off and puts his foot through the roof. He rather hopelessly tries to patch the roof with a far too small piece of wood. Stan climbs down one floor and finds a plank which will enable him to repair the hole. It is the plank his earlier adversary is standing on as he tries to grab the bendy plank being passed up to him. Man falls to ground and is picked up. Stan takes short plank up ladder. Angry man pursues Stan up ladder. Stan runs about on roof. He climbs down ladder and tries to run away. Office boy approaches and gives him a written message. Stan opens letter. Close up of letter apparently telling Mr Smith (Stan’s name) to take full charge of the building work whilst the boss is away. Stan laughs and shows letter to foreman who promptly stops the angry labourer attacking Stan. Stan gets foreman to fire trouble maker.
In office boss has returned after a week away. He talks to young Mr Smith in the office, who denies receiving letter. Secretary confirms she typed letter and indicates office boy to whom she gave the letter. Boy explains and puts hand to face when realises his mistake. On site Stan is directing the removal of the wooden scaffolding from the building. He looks crestfallen when the mistake is pointed out. Foreman speaks up for him. Cursory look by boss pleases him. The last piece of scaffolding is knocked down and the entire house corkscrews into the ground. People walk up to wreck. Boss raises fists to sky. Boss takes off hat and flings it to the ground as Stan walks off.

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