Mabel Normand

"Barney Oldfield's Race for a Life" is a short comedy directed by Mack Sennett.  The film is included in our program to illustrate the contributions of Helen Holmes, a star of Silent Hall of Fame.


Barney Oldfield was the fastest auto racer in his time.  In the film he chases an engine to rescue a girl chained to the tracks by an evil unsuccessful suitor. 

The way Ford Sterling overplays the role of the villain makes one think that the film was conceived as a parody of contemporary melodramas.

Silent comedy legends Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle and Mabel Normand at the 1915 San Francisco World's Fair Panama-Pacific Exposition. The theme of the expo was the newly built Panama Canal, and it also focused on San Francisco's newly rebuilt infrastructure following the earthquake of 1906. IMDb entry:

A Fatty Arbuckle 1915 Keystone comedy. (On the Archive elsewhere as Mabel, Fatty and the Law) This version has a generic music track.

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