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    Hollywood Icons of the 1920s: W.C. Fields Slapstick Comedy

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    This is the great comedic genius W.C. Fields’ first motion picture appearance! During Fields’ period of stage performance at Ziegield Follies, he recorded this wonderful silent short film, Pool Sharks. The film has the earnest plot of two men vying for the attentions of the same woman. To settle the score, they decide on a game of pool. At the time, Fields was famous for trick shots on a rigged table, but here the magic shots are achieved with early stop-motion techniques. Afterwards, the two men settle for fisticuffs and some good old fashion physical comedy breaks out. Fields, having not quite perfected his famous misanthropic persona at this point, still packs in plenty of laughs. He manages to push a boy out of a chair to use on his adversary! Pool Sharks is a little piece of cinematic history that provides a glimpse of the birth of a fantastic Hollywood icon.