Series: Snub Pollard

Director: Charles Parrott
Producer: Hal Roach

Stars: Snub Pollard, Marie Mosquini
Company: Pathé Exchange
Released: 04 February 1923
Length: 2 reels
Production No.: B-10
Filming dates: September 13-23, 1922
Rating: 6/10

A Tough Winter

It's Christmas time on the Hal Roach backlot... as Marie runs through the crowded streets before sitting down and counting her money. After a brief daydream she realises a policeman is standing over her and she quickly returns to the street, waving her newspapers in the air. Snub emerges in the snow and has caught a cold. His sneezes wreck what is left of his handkerchief. He makes several attempts to keep warm, including holding his hands over the flame of a passerby's lighted match and then a gas burner being used by a manhole worker. He jumps around in the street making the point that he is freezing cold until he spots a line of men queuing to get some hot soup. When eventually Snub gets to the front of the line the soup is all gone. Determined to be arrested and taken to a warm police station Snub smashes a window by the cop is more concerned in thwarting a mugging on the other side of the street.
Snub reads a newspaper headline about a fire that is still raging and runs off to find it! A lady (Marie Mosquini) is caught stealing bread by a shopkeeper and berated in the street but Snub intervenes. When Snub is unable to pay, the shopkeeper calls his goons to bundle Snub to the floor whilst Marie grabs the bread and runs off. A massive brawl breaks out in the street with several goons trying to fight Snub but of course he gets the better of all of them, including the shopkeeper. Marie takes Snub up to her apartment to meet her young son, whom she reveals the bread was intended for. Snub throws some kind of fit and then runs off out, dresses as Santa and climbs up onto the woman's roof in order to climb down the chimney and surprise her boy (Joe Cobb).
The first chimney he tries lands him in a house where a burglar is trying to open a safe. The second chimney leads to a dog biting him. Not wanting to disappoint the young lad, Snub returns to the woman's home and decides to light a fire in the fireplace to determine which chimney he should climb down. When he returns to the roof he sees that everybody else have also lighted their chimneys too. Meanwhile, the woman is paid a visit by the nasty landlord (James Finlayson) and two of his stooges who evict her and her son.
The second reel of the film begins as we skip forward to somewhere that resembles the North Pole with igloos. Snub is selling blocks of ice from the back of a wagon called the Mojave Ice Company. He sells a block of ice to a man who uses it to fill in a hole in his igloo roof. Marie and Snub have obviously been very busy doing things to keep themselves warm during their isolation because a ton of children come crawling out of their igloo (which has a downstairs fitted out with walls and a dinner table!) The young boy is now a young man and the three of them sit down together to eat a freshly-cooked seal. Snub goes outside to collect milk from a reindeer he has tied up. When Snub returns inside he finds the boy has eaten the entire meal so he has to return outside to catch his own food! He sets up a fishing rod and saws out a hole in the ice. The landlord shows up but falls through the hole. Thinking he has caught a fish Snub pulls him out but then dumps him back into the hole straight away. Snub and Marie kiss and the footage ends.

Favourite bit
When Snub goes up onto the woman's roof as Santa but then can't figure out which chimney to descend in order to surprise the young boy.

Copyrighted December 16, 1922.
Various bits of footage from the film are floating around out there. A good chuck of reel 1 was discovered in 2022 to go with approximately half of reel 2 that was already available. Using 13 and a half minutes of footage from all the material I have managed to assemble a half-decent copy of the film which I used for the review here. Allowing for the lack of intertitle cards that would have been present (this was a silent film), I pretty much have 75% of the film but a friend of mine has even more footage which I am hoping to acquire from him in due course.
There was another film of the same name released by Hal Roach Studios in 1930; this was an Our Gang comedy.
There is a scene at the beginning where Marie daydreams about stroking her coins but in reality she is stroking the policeman's truncheon. I thought this was quite risqué!
This was only Joe Cobb's second film appearance for the studios, and had only just finished filming his first Our Gang film the month previously.

My opinion
Visually it's a pretty interesting film, with ample shots of Hal Roach's backlot being shared. As far as Snub Pollard films go this one is actually rather good. Don't tell anyone I said so. They'll never believe it.

Snub Pollard
Marie Mosquini
The mother
James Finlayson
The landlord
Joe Cobb
Young boy
Mark Jones
Charles Lloyd
Man in line for soup
Jack O'Brien
Manhole worker
Sam Lufkin
Man lighting cigarette
Chris Lynton
Mugging victim
William Gillespie
Man with ashes can
Roy Brooks
Man dishing out soup
Art Rowlands
Tenant with dog
Jack Hill
Landlord's henchman #1


(click any image to enlarge)

(click any image to enlarge)

Dave Glass (information leading to grabbing reel 1)
Tommie Glass (footage from reel 2)
Jesse Brisson (identification of Sam Lufkin, Art Rowlands, Mark Jones as the butler, Jack Hill)

This page was last updated on: 06 January 2023