Sunday, January 25, 2015

Silent Sundays: Kid Boots (1926)


“Some girls crave good men- I just want ‘em reliable.”

            Samuel “Kid” Boots (Eddie Cantor) is not a very good looking guy. He has received a card with a caricature of him with his long face and big ears a poem calling him ugly. He is a sad lonely guy working in a tailor shop.
            Clara McCoy (Clara Bow) was out riding in a car with her boyfriend Big Boyle when their car breaks down. Boyle fixes the car but his suit is all messy with grease. Clara makes him buy a new suit before he gets back in the car with her. He goes into the shop Kid works in. Kid sells Boyle a suit but the suit has a hanger that will not come off of it and he places the jacket the big man. Boyle likes it and he walks out with his small suit. He proudly shows his suit off to Clara and she laughs when she sees the hanger. Boyle angrily tears into the tailor shop looking for Kid. Kid manages to get out of the store before Boyle can tear him apart. He runs into Clara outside and she rips her skirt on the car. Kid quickly stitches her skirt and they flirt a bit before Boyle comes running out of the store.
            Kid gets caught at a corner and jumps into a car. The car belongs that belongs to Tom Sterling. Tom drives away with Kid sitting next to him. Boyle somehow manages to catch up with Kid and Tom. Kid walks behind Tom like he is Tom’s friend.
            When Tom enters his apartment his soon-to-be-ex-wife Carmen is sitting seductively on his bed. She wants to come back to him because he has come into three million dollars. She traps him by having her lawyers walk in and seeing her things and her standing next to Tom in her robe. The lawyers say that they now have to stay together unless Tom has a witness. Tom opens the door and Kid comes flying through the door. He is now Tom’s witness. The evil lawyers want to get rid of Kid.
            Tom goes to work as a golf professional at a resort. He brings Kid along with him. Unfortunately Tom did not manage to hide very well. Carmen and her lawyers find out where he is staying and go out to the resort. Tom likes Eleanor the resort owner’s daughter who he has been seeing for golf lessons. Kid sees all these couples having a good time together and it makes him think of Clara. To his surprise Clara is also at the resort as a swim instructor. And sadly so is Boyle. Carmen and her lawyers see Kid acting like a love sick little boy around Clara. That gives the one lawyer the idea to have Carmen “vamp” him away from Clara. While Clara is away changing Carmen sneaks up behind Kid. Not realizing Clara is not behind him he takes Carmen’s hand kisses it. Clara sees this and gets mad at Kid. He just responds by saying women find him irresistible and that he is going to meet with Carmen for tea.
            Of course Carmen does not show up for tea with Kid. He sits by himself at a table that is partially covered by a door. He sees Clara and decides, for some stupid reason, to make her jealous. The way Kid makes Clara jealous is by making his hand look like a females, as if it was Carmen’s and moving it around as if the woman could not keep her hands off of him. He makes his actions so convincing that he makes Clara cry. Kid tries to explain that it was his hand and that Carmen is not behind the door. Of course that backfires on Kid. When he moves the door, Carmen is there having snuck in a few seconds before.
            Tom learns about Carmen being in the hotel. To get ahead of her and the lawyers he leaves the hotel to go to the city where they are to receive their divorce. He tells the bellhop to let Kid stay in his room. Tom tells Kid his plan and to stay behind. When Tom pulls away, Kid overhears the lawyer tell Carmen he will get rid of him. Kid goes up to the lawyer to come with him to a shed under the guise of wanting to ask for some legal advice. In the shed Kid hits the lawyer over the head before he can do anything to him.
            Something happens to Kid that makes him exhausted and he collapses into bed when he gets back to the room. Carmen sneaks into the room and stays there all night. Clara comes to the room the following day to give Carmen a piece of her mind. Carmen shows Clara that she was with Kid the whole night and pulls back the blanket on the bed to reveal Kid fast asleep. The lawyer comes in and tells Carmen that the hotel clerk is willing to sign something that she was in Tom’s room the entire night to use in court.
            Tom calls Kid from the courthouse telling him to get down there. He only has thirty minutes to get from the resort to the hotel. Kid finds Clara driving away. He tells her everything that happens and she tells him what Carmen did. Kid tells her she needs to come with him. Tom told him to take a plane down but the plane does not leave for an hour. Kid and Clara take horses through a mountain path that will be quick to get through. Right after they left on the horses Boyle gets to the airfield. One of the pilots tells Boyle that he thinks Clara and Kid were going to a courthouse to elope. This of course makes Boyle furious.
            Through some way too long mishaps that included Boyle and parachuting down to the courthouse from the cliff of a mountain, Kid and Clara arrive at the courthouse just in time. It takes Clara so long to tell her story of what she saw and heard that the judge, who is eager to leave and go fishing, has enough and grants the divorce. And not surprising, Kid and Clara get married.

            Kid Boots was alright. I really cannot stand plots where the ex-wife is trying to pull one over on the ex-husband and there is all this blackmail and stupid petty lies going back and forth. It was nice to see Clara Bow in a role where she was not the college girl every guy wanted or the seductress in some way. I liked seeing her as a sweet girl who liked the nerdy guy. Put it in basic terms, she was not the girl that was unattainable. This was Eddie Cantor’s first film and he had played the role of Kid Boots in the Broadway production. I have seen Cantor in later films and he drove me crazy. I liked him here though, maybe because he was not talking and his character was nice. Kid Boots is currently available to view on YouTube. It is worth seeing at least once.