Series: Charley Chase

Director: Leo McCarey
Producer: Hal Roach
Titles: H.M. Walker
Photography: Len Powers
Editor: Richard C. Currier

Stars: Charley Chase, Vivien Oakland
Company: Pathé Exchange
Released: 18 July 1926
Length: 2 reels
Production No.: B-9
Filming dates: March 20 - April 2, 1926
Rating: 7/10


Mighty Like A Moose

BEST DVD VERSION

"A story of homely people ~ A wife with a face that would stop a clock ~ And her husband with a face that would start it again ~~"

And so begins one of the most popular of all Charley Chase's films made with Hal Roach. Charley is teased by a group of kids hanging out in the street simply because he has enormous teeth; whilst his wife (Vivien Oakland) has an enormous nose. She writes in her diary that she has saved enough money to get a nose-job (I'm sure that's not how they were referred to back then, but hey!) as a surprise for her husband. Charley arrives home and the couple have an awkward kiss on account of the dynamics of their faces! The next day Charley secretly gets his teeth fixed by the dentist, whilst his wife is secretly getting her nose done at the same time, in the same building. Not only that, the two emerge from their respective appointments and cross paths, firstly in the elevator and then they sit next to one another to have their shoes shined - not recognising each other.
She catches Charley looking at her exposed legs and smiles at the attention she is receiving. Within the space of thirty seconds Charley offers to pay for her shoe shine, her taxi fare home and invites her to a party, which is being hosted by the surgeon later that evening. After each of them tells the other they are not married Charley drops the lady off near her house whilst he goes back to the house to get ready. They narrowly avoid seeing each other in the same house as they prepare to get ready for their respective dates. After a lot of sneaking about they each see the other but don't let on they have done so. After leaving the house separately they both catch taxis to their pre-arranged meeting spot where they get together and head off to the doctor's party.
The 'couple' arrive and introduce themselves and Charley is immediately accosted by a slightly eccentric female guest who takes an immediate fancy to him. They dance, erratically around the room whilst his wife has no shortage of male admirers herself. Eventually Charley manages to get a moment to sit down and chat with his date and confesses that he is in fact married; prompting her to confess likewise. Soon after, the police show up to raid the place and start ordering the guests to leave. As the musicians begin to leave leave, Charley follows them out of the door whilst pushing a piano. Charley and his date quickly get into a taxi and head for home, only to discover their photograph has made the front page of the evening newspaper under the heading "WILD PARTY RAIDED IN FASHIONABLE APARTMENT". They both realise that when their respective spouses see this their marriages are doomed.
Charley gets home first and when he sees his date coming into the house he instructs the maid to throw her out before his wife sees her. The date reveals that she is in fact Mrs. Moose - with alterations. Charley then gets the idea to try and win her over whilst still dressed as her date and sneaks into her bedroom to propose she go away with him. He then leaves the room, dresses as her husband, and comes back in and threatens her with divorce, before quickly leaving again. Moments later he re-enters dressed as the date... and then back and forth until he 'confronts' the other man in the doorway and stages a fight with himself whilst she watches on until she reads the newspaper and sees this article. Now she's twigged what's going on and continues to watch Charley make a prat of himself as she finds it all amusing until she finally shows him the newspaper before punching him in the mouth. The final scene reveals his fake teeth endiing up in the dog's mouth!

Favourite bit
The swinging boot gag. Charley tries to stage a fight with the imaginary lover behind the door by using a boot to swing backwards and forwards to kick him repeatedly in the face.

Trivia
Copyrighted May 26, 1926.
Premiered June 21, 1926.
Added to the National Film Registry on December 27, 2007.
Brian Anthony & Andy Edmonds' marvelous book on Chase, Smile When The Raindrops Fall features a still shot of Charley from the opening scene in this film.
In the opening scene, the group of boys run around the corner of a building to wait for Charley. On the left of the screen there is a community meeting board which reads "CULVER CITY'S YEAR". In the next shot as the policeman walks after Charley, we see the Culver Hotel on the left with the Adams Hotel in the background. The stairs on the right of the frame led to a tunnel underneath Washington Boulevard.
The entry in Vivien Oakland's diary is dated Tuesday July 13th, 1926. This screen capture is included in the "Intertitle cards" section at the bottom of this page.
Charley Chase flags down a cab from the Metropolitan Cab Company. Vivien Oakland is dropped off by the Yellow Cab Company.
It's hard to believe that Charley and Vivien don't realise the other is in their house every time one of them closes a door whilst the other is standing less than three feet away!
Is that enormous house big enough for the two of them, do you think?!
Neither one of them can be regarded as morally upstanding given that they each are willing to have an affair with a total stranger they just met.
Charley is seen pushing the piano out of the front door but in the next shot he is seen upstairs with it. How on earth did he manage to get the piano up the stairs by himself?

What the experts say
"One of Charley's best comedies, or anybody's for that matter." ~ Randy Skretvedt
"Brilliant melding of Leo McCarey's careful construction of situations and gags with Chase's amazing skills for physical comedy, and a typically instinctual and astute comedic turn from Vivien Oakland." ~ Paul Castligia

Charley Chase
Mr. Moose
Vivien Oakland
Mrs. Moose
Ham Kinsey
Dentists' photographer
Charles Clary
Dentist
Clara Guiol
Dentists' secretary
Ed Brandenburg
Lift operator
Gale Henry
Wallflower at party
Ann Howe
The Radio Girl (Moose's maid)
Malcolm Denny
Gigolo at party
Harry Bowen
Harp player
Charlie Hall
Shoe shine man
Rolfe Sedan
Nose doctor
Chester Bachman
Policeman
Kenneth McMillan
Boy
Terence McMillan
Boy
Billy Naylor
Boy

UNIDENTIFIED CAST

CREDITS

INTERTITLE CARDS

POSTERS
(click any image to enlarge)

LOBBY CARDS
(click any image to enlarge)


SHOT ON THE LOT
The following scenes were filmed on the Hal Roach Back Lot and are included in the TOUR
(click any image to enlarge)

SHOT ON LOCATION
(click any image to enlarge)

DVD COMPARISONS

Acknowledgements:
http://www.cartelespeliculas.com/galeria/albums/userpics/10118/1926_-_MIGHTY_LIKE_A_MOOSE_-_Leo_McCarey.jpeg (poster)
http://www.cartelespeliculas.com/galeria/albums/userpics/10118/1926_-_MIGHTY_LIKE_A_MOOSE_-_Leo_McCarey.jpg (lobby card)
Smile When The Raindrops Fall by Brian Anthony & Andy Edmonds (book)
Richard Finegan (lobby cards)
Ed Watz (lobby cards)
Jorge Finkielman (help and assistance)
Chris Bungo (locations expert)

This page was last updated on: 12 January 2020