Good Cheer

film no. 46


availability:

Laurel and Hardy and Friends - Volume Nine (VHS) from Hal Roach Studios
Released June 1, 1999. The opening title for this copy is a freeze-frame of a home movie from Exclusive Movie Studios, Inc., in Chicago, entitled "Our Gang's Christmas." This is followed by a freeze-frame of the original opening title. There are no crew credits, and the first five inter-titles and the end title are freeze-framed. The remaining inter-titles are normal and much more numerous than on the copies listed below. The moment when the drunken Santa gives Dinah a taste of his booze is missing from this print. The picture quality is fairly poor. The print totals 21:40, with 20:31 of it original footage. Almost the entire original film is included.

The Our Gang Collection - Volume 2 (DVD) from Reelclassicdvd.com
Released Mar. 2007. This is comparable to the "Laurel and Hardy and Friends" version. The opening title is slowed down to remain on the screen longer, and one of the inter-titles is freeze-framed. The footage totals 21:52.

Our Gang Volume #5 (VHS) from Grapevine Video and also from The Picture Palace
This copy has an original opening title card, without crew credits, and some of the original inter-titles, but seems to be a Mischief Makers episode judging by the music. Also, the Grapevine VHS case indicates an alternate title of "Happy Holiday." The end title is remade and follows the Pathé rooster. The picture quality is fairly poor. The print totals 15:57, with 15:54 of it original footage. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.

Our Gang Silent Comedies Volume 10 (VHS) from Video Classics
This copy is identical to Grapevine's.

Our Gang Silent Comedies #2 (VHS) from Nostalgia Family Video
This copy is essentially the same as Grapevine's, but has some of the footage removed, and is given a different soundtrack. The print totals 14:47, with 14:44 of it original footage.

Our Gang Silent Comedies Vol. 4 (VHS) from HenryButch
This is essentially the same as the Grapevine version.

The Christmas Classics Collection (5 DVD set) from Passport Video
This is a home movie print from Exclusive Movie Studios entitled "Our Gang's Christmas." This is only a small portion of the film and is taken from the last part. The picture quality is fairly good. The name of the DVD set is superimposed in the righthand corner. The footage totals 2:15, with 2:12 of it original.


technical details:

Production K-4.

Filmed September 3 to 18, 1925. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.

Released January 10, 1926. It was the 46th film in the series to be released.

Copyrighted January 23, 1926, by Pathé Exchange, Inc. Registration no. LU22300. Since the copyright was not renewed, this film is now in the public domain.

Silent two-reeler.

Opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "Good Cheer".'

Released into TV syndication as Mischief Makers episode no. 1055, "Happy Holiday," copyrighted Sep. 1, 1960, with registration number LP17360.


the crew:

Produced by Hal Roach
Credited in the film as a presenter.

Supervised by F. Richard Jones
Probably credited in the film as supervising director.

Directed by Robert F. McGowan
This credit probably appears in the film, but without his middle initial.

Photographed by Art Lloyd
This credit derives from Lloyd's payroll status as the Our Gang cameraman during this period.

Edited by Richard Currier
This credit probably appears in the film.

Titles by H. M. Walker
This credit probably appears in the film.

Story by Hal E. Roach
This credit probably doesn't appear in the film.

Animal trainer: Tony Campanaro
He was Pal's trainer.

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

studio personnel
possible uncredited involvement

the kids:

Mickey Daniels
Featured role. The enclosure that serves as the gang's clubhouse has his name written on the wall as "Micky." He and Johnny are the older kids that make the younger kids' Christmas wishes come true. Mickey seems to be the one with the ideas.

Johnny Downs
Featured role. He and Mickey work together to give the younger kids a good Christmas.

Joe Cobb
Featured role. He's alone in his apartment when "Santa" comes to visit.

Allen "Farina" Hoskins
Featured role. The nickname doesn't appear in this print. He's with his sister when "Santa" comes to visit.

David Durand
Supporting role. Not listed by Maltin & Bann, but identified by Johnny Downs on Jackie Taylor's TV show in the '70s. He's the small boy looked after by Mary.

Jackie Condon
Supporting role. He's the brother of Mary, Jay and David, and pals around with Jay.

Jay R. Smith as "J. R."
Supporting role. At the gang's clubhouse, his name is written on the wall as "J. R." He pals around with Jackie.

Mary Kornman
Supporting role. She mostly looks after her little brother David.

Jannie Hoskins as "Arnica"
Supporting role. She appears as Farina's little sister, with a jack-in-the-box gag thrown in.

other kids
Bit parts.
(1.) The one-legged boy that Mickey talks to.
(2.) Four boys are riding on a sled and throwing snowballs. There are also boys throwing snowballs on the street, but it's not clear if these are the same boys.


the animals:

Dinah the Mule
Supporting role. She pulls the sleigh that Mickey and Johnny ride, and gets a drink from the drunken Santa.

Pal
Bit part. He's Johnny's dog and appears briefly at the beginning of the film.

other animals
Bit parts.
(1.) The black cat whose fur stands on end when he sees Mickey on Johnny's shoulders as they're pretending to be Santa.
(2.) A cat with frozen whiskers.
(3.) A mouse with frozen whiskers.
(4.) A chicken with bricks on its feet.
(5.) Three brown horses pulling sleds at the beginning of the film. Could possibly have appeared previously.


the adults:

Richard Daniels as "Dad"
Supporting role. This is what all of the kids call him. He puts the idea in the kids' heads to keep wishing.

"Tonnage" Martin Wolfkeil as "Murphy," the janitor and store window Santa
Small part. When the kids see him without the beard, they stop believing in Santa.

Ed Brandenberg as the store window assistant
Bit part. According to Maltin & Bann. I'm trying to figure out what the difference is between him and Chet Brandenberg.

Sam Lufkin as the inebriated Santa Claus
Bit part. He gives Dinah a sample of his hooch.

Charlie Hall as the motorist, and as one of the crooked Santas
Bit part. He's shown in shock when he sees his car covered in ice. His appearance as one of the crooked Santas is less clear. Perhaps he's the one questioned by the cop.

man 040 as "Izzy"
Bit part. He's the Jewish man who's the first one to buy the heated bricks. His character name is revealed by a lobby card.

other adults
Supporting role, bit parts and extras.
(1.) The spirit of "Santa Claus," who appears repeatedly during the film.
(2.) The Russian man that David Durand thinks is Santa Claus.
(3.) The man at the Navy recruitment office.
(4.) Several crooked Santas, although in these prints, it's almost impossible to identify them. Maltin & Bann list Jack Gavin, Al Hallet, Jack Ackroyd, William A. Orlamond, Jules Mendel and Wallace Howe.
(5.) Several police officers. Maltin & Bann list Gene Morgan and Noah Young, the latter of whom may be the one in the hallway of the apartment building.
(6.) Four people playing the miniature figures in the window display with Santa Claus.
(7.) The passenger in Charley Hall's car.
(8.) The Salvation Army man ringing the bell.
(9.) The baker.
(10.) The beggar.
(11.) The woman in a photograph on the wall of Joe's bedroom.
(12.) Scores of pedestrians. Maltin & Bann list Chet Brandenberg and Jack Hill, but these prints are not the place to look for them.


the locations:

Hal Roach Studios backlot
It appears that all of the outdoor footage was shot here, no doubt to accommodate all that fake snow.


miscellaneous:

13 days of shooting went into the making of this film. Over four weeks had passed since filming had finished for "One Wild Ride" (no. 45). The studio was closed for half of this period. There is some indication, however, that Charles Oelze spent the last week of closure working on "Good Cheer," presumably preparing it for its wintery motif. The studio reopened on Sep. 1st, and the 'start' date arrived on Sep. 3rd. Shooting continued until the 'finish' date of Sep. 18th. No shooting took place on Sep. 6th and 13th, which were both Sundays, nor on Sep. 7th, which was Labor Day. After this, nearly two weeks passed before the Our Gang unit began filming "Buried Treasure" (no. 47).

Judging by the breakdown of David Durand's salary during the making of this film, it seems likely that he didn't join the production until Sep. 9th.

Count this film among those that include a Krazy Kat doll. This is the toy that Joe picks up after the large pile of toys magically appears in front of the kids.

There were 40 copies of this film printed for its initial release.


©Feb. 17, 2005, by Robert Demoss.
2005 updates: 2/27, 4/25, 5/3, 12/15.
2006 updates: 1/2, 1/9, 2/11, 5/16, 6/12, 10/25.
2007 updates: 1/8, 4/1, 10/22, 11/9, 11/25.
2008 updates: 2/21, 3/18, 3/31, 7/6, 7/23.


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


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