Best Comedy Movies of 1901
What Happened on Twenty-Third Street, New York City
A street level view from the sidewalk, looking along the length of 23rd Street. Following actuality footage of pedestrians and street traffic, the actors, a man in summer attire and a woman in an ankle-length dress, walk toward the camera.
The Big Swallow
A man, objecting to being filmed, comes closer and closer to the camera lens until his mouth is all we see. Then he opens wide and swallows camera and cinematographer. He steps back, chews, and grins.
The Countryman and the Cinematograph
A satire on the way that audiences unaccustomed to the cinema didn't know how to react to the moving images on a screen - in this film, an unsophisticated (and stereotypical) country yokel is alternately baffled and terrified, in the latter case by the apparent approach of a steam train.
A lad from a butcher shop is carrying a tray laden with a roast or a leg of lamb. A hobo grabs it and runs. The boy gives chase, joined by dogs, as neighbors watch the spectacle. The hobo jumps into a large rain barrel, followed by the dogs.
The Old Maid in the Horsecar
A female impersonator giggles and flirts. By the following decade, many female impersonators would be shown doing their acts on the stage and in the movies; the Eltinge Theater on 42nd Street in New York is named for Julian Eltinge, the most famous of them. This was probably the earliest "name" example for the movies. Gilbert Saroni plays an exceedingly ugly woman who coyly flirts with her fan.
The Magician's Cavern
A very enthusiastic magician performs several tricks.
The Trick Cyclist
Shows a tramp enter and try to ride a wheel, from which he makes some very ludicrous falls and gives up in despair, after which an artist enters and jumps rope on a wheel. A very laughable subject.