Class Overview

Enjoy screenings and discussions of films featuring Buster Keaton, the acclaimed American film actor and director best known for Buster Keaton in "The General" - Continuing Education at Seattle Central Collegehis physical comedy, elaborate stunts and deadpan expression during silent films from the 1920s.

Roger Ebert called Buster Keaton "the greatest actor-director in the history of the movies."


Learn about Keaton's unique approach to the art of motion pictures in this class led by Dr Richard J. Meyer, in cooperation with the Seattle International Film Festival, Scarecrow Video and Continuing Education at Seattle Central College.

Born into a vaudeville family in 1895, Keaton made 12 feature films and 19 two-reel comedies from 1920 to 1929.

It wasn't until the late 1950's that Keaton was rediscovered and then acknowledged significantly as Charlie Chaplin's only serious rival among the masters of silent comedy.

His reputation and persona was that of an extremely shy and private person and he became known as the "Great Stone Face."

His artistic principle was "getting a laugh without being too ridiculous."

In this class, explore the art of this fascinating artist, as well as the artistry of the early days of motion pictures during the heyday of silent films.

View and discuss early shorts and feature films including "Our Hospitality," "Sherlock, Jr.," and "The General."

Enjoy lively discussions led by film scholar Richie Meyer that will bring out more meaning and enjoyment in your viewing experience.


Learning Outcomes

  • Become familiar with the art of Buster Keaton
  • Understand the role of physical comedy in film
  • Appreciate the medium of film and its early history originating in silent and black and white films

Who Should Take This Class?

  • Movie lovers and film students and anyone interested in viewing and discussing films with others
  • Anyone interested in comedy, character development and physical humor
  • People interested in exploring early 20th century history and culture as depicted in film

Session Details