The 'High Sign' Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ September 3, 2010
Keaton in an amusement park, makes for an amusing movie.
Super Reviewer
October 7, 2011
Earlier sections are a little slow, but the climax in the house with the secret trap doors is sheer genius.
Super Reviewer
½ September 17, 2011
The "High Sign" was Buster Keaton's first two-reel independent film but was shelved for a year when he broke his ankle and had to release it to meet his contract, which is a lucky break for us Buster fans! The film demonstrates once again Keaton's acrobats and fitness as well as his mastery of the genre. It's nice knowing that even back in 1920/21 the legend already had a keen grasp on what he wanted to become. While brief at only 19 minutes, it's most certainly a fun and entertaining comedy that is loads of fun to watch. Getting into Buster Keaton by way of the Kino Short Films Collection is a fast and still enjoyable way to do so as all 19 films range between 17-23 minutes and contain Keaton's magic and some wonderful set pieces.
January 2, 2009
I've noticed Keaton breaks the fourth wall pretty often but it's not a negative. The cross section set gags and running trap door themes never get tiring.
½ October 27, 2014
Keaton shelved this movie for quite a while because he wasn't satisfied with it as his first solo project. It's a hoot, though. Keaton's prop comedy is front and center here, climaxing with an extended chase through a house loaded with trap doors and secret passages.
January 29, 2014
My first introduction to Keaton and I loved him running around the house at the end. It was brilliantly done. I wish I had a house to play in like that.
½ March 6, 2012
95

The High Sign puts Buster trying to make some cash, and he inadvertently gets hired to both protect and murder the same man.

The High Sign is quintessential Buster Keaton. It's a great example at what makes Buster so great. It's got inventive jokes, impressive stunts, incredible technical inventions, and an interesting story.

There are so many fantastic moments that are simultaneously uproarious, technically impressive, and physically impressive that only exemplify how talented Buster really was. The newspaper gag, the shooting gallery, the shooting practice scene, are all brilliantly hilarious. And of course, the terrific chase scene through the booby trapped house in last five minutes of the film are just a feast of Buster's talent. His talent as an athlete, comedian, and writer just explode off the screen. The story is rather amusing too, and it works out fairly well, so much so that it puts a goofy smile on your face.

The High Sign is just a fantastically good time. Many of the jokes are so innovative and uniquely Buster, that it makes this film a must-see for any fan of Buster's or even any fan of classic cinema. There may not be anything life-altering about the film, but there's no denying it's the perfect film to showcase Buster's talent.
January 15, 2012
An entertaining short film where Buster Keaton again finds himself in the middle of an interesting situation. The 'trick house' at the end provides for several laughs.
Super Reviewer
½ September 17, 2011
The "High Sign" was Buster Keaton's first two-reel independent film but was shelved for a year when he broke his ankle and had to release it to meet his contract, which is a lucky break for us Buster fans! The film demonstrates once again Keaton's acrobats and fitness as well as his mastery of the genre. It's nice knowing that even back in 1920/21 the legend already had a keen grasp on what he wanted to become. While brief at only 19 minutes, it's most certainly a fun and entertaining comedy that is loads of fun to watch. Getting into Buster Keaton by way of the Kino Short Films Collection is a fast and still enjoyable way to do so as all 19 films range between 17-23 minutes and contain Keaton's magic and some wonderful set pieces.
October 24, 2011
Classic just classic!
½ September 20, 2011
Buster was at the top of his game even so early in his career. The gags are hilarious such as the over sized newspaper. Keaton even made fun of the age old banana peel trick when he walks right over it without so much as a flinch. The climax with the house full of passages, revolving walls, and trap doors make for a brilliant visual treat.
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