Series: Snub Pollard

Director: George Jeske
Producer: Hal Roach

Stars: Snub Pollard, Blanche Mehaffey, Glenn Tryon, Billy Engle
Company: Pathé Exchange
Released: 13 January 1924
Length: 1 reel
Production No.: D-33
Filming dates: September 17-26, 1923
Rating: 5/10

The Big Idea

Available on DVD:

The mayor's son Allawishus (Glenn Tryon) is playing tennis with his sweetheart (Blanche Mehaffey) when he falls over the net and busts his nose. She walks off in disgust. She finds inventor Ignatius (Snub Pollard) on the ground after he has fallen off his bicycle. He offers to show her his nutcrackers (!) and they ride off together to his barn with Allawishus following behind them. After Ignatius demonstrates an invention to the girl involving cutting the strings on an iron to squash a nut he has the contraption used against him by the jealous boyfriend who catches them together. Ignatius pays a visit to a dodgy patent lawyer with an idea for a dust collector. As soon as Ignatius leaves, the lawyer pays a visit to the Mayor to tell him all about the invention and lays claim to the idea for himself.
The mayor calls in his city engineer (Billy Engle) and tells him to check out the invention. He can't keep it a secret and proceeds to tell everybody he encounters. The engineer heads for the inventor's barn where he is joined by two of the men he told but the inventor is one step ahead of them both and constantly pops out of the woodwork to clonk them on their heads or pour water on them when they try to spy into the barn through holes from the outside. Ignatius invites all of them back later in the day to demonstrate his invention, Pollard's Patent Pavement Polisher, which boasts to be "dustless, smokeless and noiseless". As the eager crowd wait, the short-sighted inventor has to smash down his barn in order to get the machine out because it won't fit through the door.... so he backs it out instead before stopping in front of them and showering them all with dust and heading off down the highway. He returns to the crowd to show off how his truck removes all debris but as he opens up the back a group of men all fall out onto the ground and poor Snub is throttled by them.

Favourite bit
Snub demonstrates his new invention - a nutcracker - by dropping an anvil onto a nut. A bit excessive there, don't you think, Mr. Pollard?

Copyrighted December 24, 1923.
Reissued June 6, 1926.
According to the list published by Rob Stone this film was possibly #C-124.
Snub Pollard appeared in an earlier film with the same name, which was part of the Harold Lloyd series.
At least one source lists Billy Engle's character as the Mayor. He is in fact the city engineer.
When Billy Engle emerges from the Mayor's office he walks down some steps. I think this is the admin building of the Hal Roach Studios.
My opinion
Actually quite watchable! When I see Snub Pollard's name in the credits for a film I generally have low expectations, but this one was just about decent.

Snub Pollard
Ignatius Pollard
Blanche Mehaffey
The girl
Glenn Tryon
Allawishus, the Mayor's son
Billy Engle
City engineer
George Rowe
Patent lawyer
Jack Ackroyd
Town council member
Marvin Loback
Town council member
Al Forbes
Town council member

CREDITS (click image to enlarge) INTERTITLES (click image to enlarge)

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Dave Glass (help)

This page was last updated on: 13 January 2023