SEVEN CHANCES (1925): Buster is to inherit $7 million on his 27th birthday, providing that he is married before 7:00 p.m. Through a misunderstanding about how worthy she is to him, his girlfriend, at first, turns his marriage proposal down, and this sends Buster on a crusade to hurry and seek a bride in a race against time.
The best scenes in "Seven Chances" occur in the last third of the movie, where athletic, speeding Buster is being chased by a thousand angry potential brides, and we get to see the actual houses, shops, cars, gas stations, banks, signs, etc., of 1925 Los Angeles and the Hollywood hills. During the silent era, filmmakers were able to film out of the studio and onto the actual street. With the emergence of sound, outside scenes had to be made using what little acreage the studio had on their back lot, or the use of (phony-looking) rear projection (that sometimes moved way too fast). Another reason the last third of "Seven Chances" is so good is because it contains one of Buster's most famous scenes: being chased down a mountain by an avalanche of gigantic boulders.
"Seven Chances" is a story that was bought by Buster's boss, who expected Bus to mold it to his style of comedy. The script is credited to someone else, but I spotted that Buster probably wrote at least one of the title cards because it contains Keatonese grammar: "It don't matter who I marry".
NEIGHBORS (1920): This is a great 2-reeler that starts off as a Romeo and Juliet kind of story, then veers off into Bus getting into silly situations using blackface and being chased by cops, then goes back to the Romeo and Juliet theme. Some of the funniest (and dangerous) gags of his career are shown here between Bus and his father, played by his real father Joe, like Bus being hung by his toes on a clothesline with Joe accidentally whacking him with a carpet beater that throws Bus into a spin-around. "Neighbors" continues with the title card "that afternoon, the inventor tries his patent fly-swatter". The fly-swatter is just a big board that teeter-totters on the fence that separates the sweethearts' backyards. Weeeeee! ....a disoriented Joe Keaton is flipped into the neighbors' backyard by the fly-swatter, and with this, I noticed that a very funny (and very stiff) dummy was used in the long shot.
THE BALLOONATIC (1923): Buster's first era of his 2-reelers is nearly coming to a close. In a few months, success will demand that he start filming more elaborate features (5-7 reels). This 2nd to last 2-reeler starts off at an amusement park where Buster is trying to pick up girls. He proceeds to a balloon launching where he accidentally is launched with it into the air. After traveling for a while, he is shown idiotically playing hunter (with duck decoys hanging from the balloon) and shoots at a bird that is resting against the side of the balloon. The blast plummets him to the earth, where a series of gags follow with Bus in the wilderness, including the use of lots of animals and a canoe named Minnie-Tee-Hee.