The Kid Brother

The Kid Brother

Director: J.A. Howe, Lewis Milestone, Ted Wilde
Cast: Harold Lloyd

Blu-ray (Special Edition / Wide Screen)

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Overview

Even taking into consideration such worthy candidates as Safety Last and The Freshman, many Harold Lloyd fans regard The Kid Brother as his finest film. A humorous variation on Tol'able David, the film stars Lloyd as Harold Hickory, the youngest member of the rural Hickory family. Though out-muscled by his sheriff father (Walter James) and brawny brothers (Olin Francis, Leo Willis), Harold is the cleverest of the Hickorys, industriously figuring out all sorts of clever devices to streamline his housekeeping chores. Still, his father and brothers treat him as the baby of the family, leaving him to mind the farm while they head for a town meeting. In his dad's absence, however, Harold is deputized to deliver a "cease and desist" summons to a travelling carnival which has pitched camp nearby. Upon arriving at the carnival, Harold discovers that its owner is the lovely Mary Powers (Jobyna Ralston), whom he'd met the day before. A fire breaks out in the tent, leaving Mary homeless, but Harold invites her to stay the night at his farm -- making certain that his roughneck brothers observe the proper social amenities. The next day, it is discovered that the money for an important dam project, left in the care of Harold's father, has been stolen. The elder Hickory is held responsible, but the real culprit is brutish carnival strongman Sandoni (Constantin Romanoff). Through a chain of incredible coincidences, Harold finds himself facing Sandoni on board a derelict boat. For a while, it looks as though Sandoni is going to mop the deck with Harold, but our hero gains the upper hand when he finds out that his behemoth opponent can't swim! Just as his father is about to be lynched by the angry mob, Harold delivers the unconscious Sandoni to the doorstep of the jail. Proudly, Harold's father declares "Son, you're a true Hickory!" -- but the story isn't quite over yet, since Harold still has to propose to Mary, and to clean the clock of the local bully who's been annoying him all through the picture. Beautifully photographed and expertly directed (Lewis Milestone, though uncredited, helmed many of the important scenes), The Kid Brother is everything a good silent comedy should be, and an enduring testament to the brilliance of Harold Lloyd. Best bit: That eye-popping crane shot as Harold shinnies up a tree to bid several fond farewells to the departing Mary.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/12/2019
UPC: 0715515227414
Original Release: 1927
Rating: NR
Source: Criterion
Region Code: A
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Sound: [silent]
Time: 1:22:00
Sales rank: 13,185

Special Features

New 4k digital restoration ; Orchestral score by composer Carl Davis from 1989; Alternate archival organ score performed by Gaylord Carter; Audio Commentary from 2005 featuring filmmaker and Harold Lloyd, and Harold Lloyd's granddaughter Suzanne Lloyd; Harold's Leading Ladies, a new conversation between author Cari Beauchamp and Suzanne Lloyd; Anatomy of a Gag: Monkeyshoes, a new video essay by critic and filmmaker David Cairns; Behind-the-scenes stills gallery curated by Harold Lloyd archivist Richard Simonton Jr. ; Close to Home, a new video essay on the film's shooting locations by author John Bengston; Dutch television interview wiht Lloyd from 1962; Featurette from 2005 about Greenacres, Lloyd's estate, hosted by Suzanne Lloyd; Two restored rare early Lloyd shorts: Over the Fence (1917) and That's Him (1918), with new Wurlitzer theater pipe organ scores and a discussion of their early film formats by archivist Dino Everett; New tour of the Wurlitzer organ with Composer Nathan Barr and organist Mark Herman; Plus: An essay by critic Carrie Rickey

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Harold Lloyd Harold Hickory
Jobyna Ralston Mary Powers
Walter James Sheriff Jim Hickory
Leo Willis Leo Hickory
Olin Francis Olin Hickory
Constantine Romanoff Sandoni
Eddie Boland "Flash" Farrell
Frank Lanning Sam Hooper
Ralph Yearsley Hank Hooper
Gus Leonard Townsman

Technical Credits
J.A. Howe Director
Lewis Milestone Director
Ted Wilde Director
Howard J. Green Screenwriter
John Wesley Grey Screenwriter
Jesse Lasky Producer
Harold Lloyd Producer
Walter Lundin Cinematographer
Allen McNeil Editor
John L. Murphy Production Manager
Lex Neal Screenwriter

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