A Pair of Birds (Crystal, 1914)
Mr. Bird (Charles De Forrest) has to go away on a business trip for a few days. As it’s the maid’s vacation, Mrs. Bird (Vivian Prescott) decides to visit her mother rather than stay in the house alone. Mr. Bird’s trip is cut short and he returns a day earlier than expected. Mrs. Bird also comes home early, not minutes after her husband let himself in. Mrs. Bird hears someone moving around in the kitchen, and as the house is supposed to be empty, she assumes it’s a burglar and runs upstairs to get her gun. Mr. Bird hears someone rifling through the bedroom drawers, and since he knows his wife is out, he concludes it must be a burglar. He arms himself with a butcher knife and slowly climbs the stairs.
It’s a well-worn plot and A Pair of Birds (1914) doesn’t do much new with it. De Forrest didn’t impress me. His acting is nothing more than alternately looking surprised and then mugging for the camera. I did like the character of Mrs. Bird. She’s always on the offensive and her trigger-happy antics were worth a chuckle. All in all, it wasn’t a bad film, but there’s nothing memorable about it and little to recommend it.
I bought this film, little more than a week ago, for two reasons: The first and foremost reason was that it’s nitrate and I buy all the nitrate offered me that I can fool myself into thinking I can afford. The second reason was that it’s from Crystal Films and looked to be from around 1914, which meant it had to star one of two comedy duos: Pearl White and Chester Barnett, or Charles De Forrest and Vivian Prescott. I was hoping it was White and Barnett, because that would take me one step closer to completing my collection of all of White’s surviving films, but I’m not disappointed that it turned out to be De Forrest and Prescott. I like the lesser knowns, and compared to Pearl White, Charlie and Vivian are entirely forgotten.
My rating: Meh.