Series: Paul Parrott

Director: George Jeske
Producer: Hal Roach

Stars: James Parrott, Eddie Baker, Wallace Howe
Company: Pathé Exchange
Released: 08 April 1923
Length: 1 reel
Production No.: C-83
Filming dates: January 12-17, 1923
Rating: 4/10

The Smile Wins

The film begins with salesman Paul (JAMES PARROTT) being violently thrown through several doorways in an apartment building; but he simply gets up off the floor, smiles and moves on to the next door. He walks into an office for stocks and bonds but is ejected by the manager (EDDIE BAKER) and falls over the janitor (GEORGE ROWE), who is observing the mess of broken glass in the corridor left by Paul's ejections. Still smiling, and still determined, Paul puts on a false beard (because you always carry a spare one in your pocket, right?) and re-enters the office. This time the manager is more welcoming... until his beard is blown off by an electric fan and his is ejected again.
Outside in the corridor a gentleman (WALLACE HOWE) dressed identically to Paul is dragged into the office and roughed up by the manager in a case of mistaken identity. Still determined, Paul pursues the beaten-up man and then accosts the janitor. A messenger (ROY BROOKS) delivers a notification to the bonds manager of a delivery, which comes in the form of a large chest (delivered by MARVIN LOBACK). Guess who is inside it?! The manager grabs an axe and starts detroying it, but fortunately Paul had the foresight to get out of it quickly enough before hand! The manager has had enough and sets the heavy Loback upon Paul. After a one-sided struggle, Paul is thrown from the second floor window, and lands in the back of the manager's car just as he is getting into it (come on, what were the odds?) He drives off with Paul still trying to make a sale until eventually the manager drives his car across the railroad tracks and they get wrecked by a train, landing them both in hospital. When Eddie sees that he and Paul have been put into the same bed, Eddie eventually buys the book from Paul just so that he can smack him in the face with it!

Favourite bit
Paul never gives up trying. Even after falling down an elevator shaft, he opens the door, gets up and continues to pester an uninterested Wallace Howe, as if nothing has happened!

Copyrighted March 30, 1923.
The office in which Paul causes all the trouble is "Empire stocks and bonds".
Ena Gregory is listed by one source as being in the film. There is one woman seen as Eddie Baker's secretary but it doesn't look like Ena to me.
The final scene in the hospital shows up in Our Gang's Dogs Of War! when the Gang run through the studio and interrupt the filming of the scene.
In June 2024 I reconstructed the film using two different prints. Dave Glass provided a copy and a version with Italian subtitles was published on YouTube. The YT version has an extra 62 seconds of footage which are missing from Dave's print.
+New footage found: (DG = Dave Glass YT = YouTube)
-1. The very opening scene. Paul comes flying out of the door from the right hand side and lands in the hallway. The DG print begins with Paul already on the floor, but the YT print shows Paul actually coming through the door. A difference of 1 extra second which is absent from the DG copy. +1second
-2. When Paul enters the office near the beginning he tries to shove his book in the faces of Eddie Baker and the lady with him. The YT version has an additional 4 seconds of footage here where Paul and Eddie have an exchange before Paul does a 360 degrees turn at the door before we cut to the hallway with George Rowe. +4seconds
-3. When Paul is standing at the doorway watching Eddie Baker fighting with the guy in his office there is an additional 4 seconds of footage in the YT print. +4seconds
-4. In the DG print the film goes into freeze-frame at 03:49 with George Rowe and Paul in the hallway but the music continues. I have now tightened this to remove the freeze framing. This was also a significant scene because the music continues to play for 7 seconds in the DG print during the freeze-frame. -7seconds
-5. In the scene where the DG print freezes (see above) there is a brief moment where George goes to walk away (towards the camera) but Paul pulls him back by his jacket. +2seconds
-6. Again, at the 06:11 mark in the DG print, there is a freeze-frame image of Paul holding his book, which I have cut down to a single frame. This looks like it was to accommodate an intertitle card because it matches the exact time in the YT copy where one pops up. It's at the moment Eddie Baker is with Marvin Loback in the corridor and points to his office. -6seconds
-7. Finally, the DG footage cuts out at the moment the car crosses the railroad tracks and gets hit by the train. From this point until the end all the YT footage is new and is absent from the DG print. There is a title card that is on-screen for 5 seconds during this extra footage, which I have removed. +51seconds
-All music from both sets of footage has been muted and all (foreign) intertitle cards from the YT have been removed. Bringing the new, complete version of the film to a running time of: 08:49 - with an additional 62 seconds of footage being added in total.

James Parrott
Eddie Baker
Stocks & bonds manager
Wallace Howe
Marvin Loback
Delivery man
George Rowe
Roy Brooks
Sammy Brooks
Ena Gregory

(click any image to enlarge)

Dave Glass (review copy)
Martin Arias (help)
'Gemora83' (YouTube print)
Jesse Brisson (information)

This page was last updated on: 28 June 2024