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Circus Today (1926)

Gus and Slim are working at a circus that is owned by the domineering Steve Skinner. After Gus and Slim have botched up several routines, Gus takes off in a horse cart, in order to avoid ... See full summary »


Lloyd Bacon, Del Lord


Al Giebler (titles), Gus Meins


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Cast overview:
Billy Bevan ... Gus Barnum
Andy Clyde ... Slim Barnum
Madeline Hurlock ... Madame Stella
Kewpie Morgan ... Steve Skinner - Ring Master
Roger Moore ... Motorcycle Cop (as Joe Young)
Numa the Lion Numa the Lion ... Numa
Anna May the Elephant Anna May the Elephant ... Anna May


Gus and Slim are working at a circus that is owned by the domineering Steve Skinner. After Gus and Slim have botched up several routines, Gus takes off in a horse cart, in order to avoid Skinner's wrath. But the cart is pulling a large crate filled with lions, and soon the two circus hands find themselves in the middle of an uncontrollable situation. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Short







Release Date:

7 March 1926 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Circus Day See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mack Sennett Comedies See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Featured in Slapstick Encyclopedia, Vol. 7: the Race is on! (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

A Bit Too Chaotic, But Contains Some Very Good Material
3 December 2004 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

Although this short comedy is too chaotic to make it completely satisfying, it does contain some very good material. With a little care and restraint, it might have ranked among the better short comedies of its era. As is, it is worth seeing, but the individual gags are better than the movie as a whole, which does not really fit together very well.

The story has Billy Bevan and Andy Clyde as two circus hands who cause a series of mishaps with the circus's equipment and animals. The two work pretty well together, and most of the gags work fine in themselves. Some of the best gags feature the circus animals, especially the lions, who are used rather creatively.

What keeps it from being better is that the good material is packed together haphazardly, making the whole rather less than the sum of its parts. There is enough gag material here for two 20-minute features, and they could have made it much better by saving some of the gags, and spending more time carefully setting up each gag that remained, so as to give it the maximum effect.

Even as it is, "Circus Today" is still worth seeing. And to be sure, many other comedy film-makers - both then and today - make this same mistake, thinking that the more jokes they squeeze into their movies, the better. Getting the right timing and delivery can be harder than coming up with the gag ideas in the first place. But there's still no question that many of the basic ideas in this movie are funny and imaginative.

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