Watched Buster Keaton and Clyde Bruckman's 1927 Film "The General"

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“I don't act, anyway. The stuff is all injected as we go along. My pictures are made without script or written directions of any kind.”
--
Buster Keaton

The General is the last movie from the top twenty in the AFI 100 that I had not seen. At #18, it sits between The Graduate and On The Waterfront. It's the second silent film I've seen thus far, and it's the first Buster Keaton film I've ever seen.

The story of this film takes place in the
Civil War era, and the main character is Johnnie Gray (played by Buster Keaton), who is a conductor of a train in the South. On a stop in Marietta, Georgia, he goes to see his fiancee Annabelle. When the war breaks out, he is rejected when he tries to sign up to become a Confederate soldier because he is too valuable in his current job. Unfortunately, they did not tell him why they didn't want him to enlist.
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When Johnnie sees Annabelle's father and brother in line, they ask him to join them, but he walks away sad, leaving them to believe he didn't want to enlist. The next time Johnnie sees his love, she is furious and believes he is a disgrace.
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The catalyst for the rest of the movie revolves around a plot the Northern army has to steal
The General, Johnnie's beloved train. Johnnie chases them single-handedly and the story goes from there.

Buster Keaton does his own stunts and both the action and the physical comedy are wonderfully executed.
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With a 75 minute runtime, this movie was well worth my time. It's available on Netflix streaming, and it's great! I totally recommend it.

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