THE HIGH SIGN was Buster Keaton's first independent effort but he believed the film retained too much of Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle's style of comedy and not enough of his own. He shelved the film and made ONE WEEK instead. THE HIGH SIGN was released only after Keaton broke his ankle and Joseph M. Schenck needed a film to release. THE HIGH SIGN contains one great Keaton sequence: Buster sits down with a newspaper that slowly opens up to the size of a bed sheet.
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Reading that Keaton felt this entry was more in the style of Arbuckle is only slightly true; the stone face is already well in place and as always the athletic ability put the Keaton stamp on the main character. The trap-door house is quite different from the "One Week" one and just as full of laughs and spills. The views of the Santa Monica & Venice seaside businesses are amazing little time capsules in themselves and once again, a Keaton film with no wasted time or maudlin breakdown.
Buster Keaton never made a bad movie. Delightful