Boys To Board

film no. 10


availability:

Our Gang Silent Comedies Vol. 5 (VHS) from Video Classics and
Our Gang Comedies V (VHS) from The Picture Palace
This is a home movie print from Exclusive Movie Studios, Inc., in Chicago, called "Boarding House Frolics." It's of very poor picture quality, with mostly original inter-titles and one that's not. The ending title card is generic. The print total 13:00, with 12:45 of it original footage. Roughly two-thirds of the original film is included.

Rascals Silents Vol. 2 (VHS) from A-1 Video
This is a TV print from the Mischief Makers program called "Boarding School." The opening title has been replaced by an A-1 title card, but the one from the TV print can be seen for a split second. The end title has been replaced with a Pathé ending title card, no doubt put there by A-1. All of the inter-titles have been removed. The picture quality is less than ideal, but a lot better than the Video Classics print, which is also missing some of the footage seen in this print. The print totals 12:32, with 12:16 of it original footage. Roughly two-thirds of the original film is included. Watching this version with the Video Classics version might bring the total to roughly three quarters.

Our Gang Silent Comedies Vol. 9 (VHS) from HenryButch
This is the TV print.


technical details:

Production A-10.

Filmed October 2 to November 2, 1922. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for more details.

Copyrighted March 30, 1923, by Pathé Exchange, Inc. Registration no. LU18824. Since the copyright was not renewed, this film is now in the public domain.

Released April 8, 1923. It was the 11th film in the series to be released.

Silent two-reeler.

Probably opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "Boys To Board".' The heading may instead have read '"Our Gang" Comedy' or '"Our Gang" Series.'

Released into TV syndication as Mischief Makers episode no. 1031, "Boarding School," copyrighted Sep. 1, 1960, with registration number LP17336.


the crew:

Produced by Hal Roach
Probably credited in the film as a presenter.

Directed by Tom McNamara
This credit probably appears in the film.

Photographed by Len Powers
This credit is based on Powers' payroll status as the Our Gang cameraman during this period. Harry W. Gerstad was also involved with the series during this period.

Titles by H. M. Walker and Tom McNamara
This credit probably appears in the film, but may omit McNamara's name.

Story by Hal E. Roach and Tom McNamara
This credit probably doesn't appear in the film. McNamara was listed in the payroll summaries as an Our Gang writer during this period.

Teacher: Fern Carter
Released by Pathé Exchange, Inc.
Passed by the National Board of Review
Probably indicated in the film.

studio personnel
possible uncredited involvement


the kids:

Ernie "Sunshine Sammy" Morrison
Featured role. Maltin & Bann indicate that the usual nickname was used, but these prints don't reveal anything. He appears pretty much throughout the film, delivering Joe to the boarding school, then having to wash dishes to pay for the damage his dog has done. He then helps the boys escape that night.

Joe Cobb
Featured role. He's the new boy at the boarding school, and appears in most of the scenes.

Jackie Condon
Featured role. He provides some comic relief in the classroom, being the victim of a pea-shooter, and ultimately getting the dunce cap.

Mickey Daniels
Featured role. He mostly causes mischief in the classroom and gets into a fight with Jack Davis.

Jack Davis
Supporting role. Most of what he does is ensemble work, but he's clearly a main player in this film.

Andy Samuel
Supporting role. This is one of the few films he was strongly featured in prior to Jack Davis's departure from the series. He later said that he was often used for the more risky stuff, since he was 13 at the time. It may be him doubling for the other boys as they climb down the rope they've made out of sheets.

Allen "Farina" Hoskins
Supporting role. There's no indication whether or not his nickname was used in this film. He gets relatively little screen time, at least in these prints, but is the one that leads the gang into the bootlegger's hideout.


the animals:

dog 001
Small part. This is Ernie and Farina's dog, who causes some damage after chasing the cat around.

mule 007 as "The Sheik"
Small part. The mule that pulls Ernie's wagon is "Featherfoot" from "The Big Show" (no. 7). Maltin & Bann list Dinah, but she doesn't appear in these prints.

other animals
Bit parts.
(1.) Joe's cat, which he bring along in a travel bag. Possibly the cat from "Our Gang" (no. 1).
(2.) An owl seen in a single shot at the bootlegger's hideout.


the adults:

Richard Daniels as "'Pop' Malone"
Featured role. He's the benevolent patriarch of the orphanage and decides to escape with the kids. He's seen pretty much throughout the film.

Helen Gilmore as "'Mother' Malone"
Featured role. She's the nasty old woman who eventually caves in when her husband returns home with renewed confidence.

Clara Guiol as the household helper
Supporting role. She appears sporadically and is terrified of Gilmore.

Charles Stevenson as "'Moonshine' Mose"
Small part. He's the bootlegger and appears towards the end of the film.

Wallace Howe as the sheriff
Small part. He appears towards the end to arrest Stevenson.


the music (sort of):

"America (My Country 'Tis Of Thee)" by Samuel F. Smith
The music first appeared in Thesaurus Musicus in 1744. Smith added the lyrics in 1832. The inter-titles reveal that this is the song sung by the schoolboys at the beginning of the film. Interestingly enough, even though the TV print removes the inter-titles, the soundtrack still plays this tune.


miscellaneous:

28 days of shooting went into the making of this film. Shooting began on Oct. 2nd and continued until Nov. 2nd. No shooting for "Boys To Board" took place on Oct. 8th, 15th, 22nd, or 29th, which were all Sundays. However, production for "A Pleasant Journey" (no. 11) involving director Bob McGowan and cameraman Harry Gerstad took place on Sun., Oct. 29th, as well as the dates from Oct. 24th to 27th, which overlapped with "Boys To Board." The two films also overlapped on Nov. 2nd. It's interesting to note that shooting for "Boys To Board" began the Monday following the last Saturday of retakes for "The Cobbler" (no. 8), and that the main filming for "A Pleasant Journey" began on the overlap day of Nov. 2nd.

Pop Malone is supposed to be teaching out of a book called Brief Course In Geography, but keeps a copy of Wild West Weekly within its pages. Mickey seems to reading something called The Mother Jungle Book.

Mickey, Jack, Andy, and Jackie refer to themselves as Us Desperite 4.

There were 32 copies of this film printed for its initial release.


©Jan. 12, 2005, by Robert Demoss.
2005 updates: 2/27, 3/20, 3/27, 4/25, 9/6.
2006 updates: 1/2, 1/9, 6/12, 10/25.
2007 updates: 4/1, 10/22, 11/16.
2008 updates: 2/21, 3/31, 4/26, 4/29, 7/6.
2009 updates: 7/23.


Thanks to Rob Stone, Joe Moore and Mark Brumfield for assistance on this page.


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