Burn 'Em Up Barnes (1921) (Silent)

The youthful son of a wealthy mogul runs away from home to become a race car driver.
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Format:  DVD-R
sku:  ALP 7668D
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Burn 'em Up Barnes for $5.95
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DVD-R Details

  • Run Time: 1 hours, 13 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Released: July 7, 2015
  • Originally Released: 1921
  • Label: Alpha Video

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Description by OLDIES.com:

Johnny Barnes, the spoiled son of a rich car manufacturer, is obsessed with breaking speed records. In fact, the police have given him so many tickets that even his parents call him "Burn 'Em Up Barnes". On one of his joyrides, Johnny is pulled over and robbed by a band of car thieves who have been terrorizing the roads. Left unconscious in the middle of nowhere, he is nursed back to health by a pair of hobos. After learning the value of hard work and fellowship from his new friends, Johnny decides to change his reckless ways. His first task: To use his racing skills to capture the crooks who left him for dead.

This exciting racing picture stars multi-talented comedian Johnny Hines, who also co-directed with George Beranger. An actor himself, Beranger appeared in silent classics such as The Birth of a Nation (1915), Broken Blossoms (1919), and The Bat (1926), occasionally using his middle name, André, to differentiate his careers. Richard Thorpe, who plays one of the film's villains, would also have an illustrious career behind the camera. As a director for MGM, his filmography would eventually include includes entries in the popular Tarzan and Thin Man series, the historical dramas Ivanhoe and The Prisoner of Zenda (both 1952), and the Elvis Presley vehicle Jailhouse Rock (1957). Edmund Breese played Zander, the politico deposed by Groucho Marx as President of Freedonia in Duck Soup (1933). A hit at the box-office, Burn 'Em Up Barnes was remade as a 12-chapter movie serial starring Jack Mulhall and Frankie Darro in 1934.


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Fun action comedy with Johnny Hines Movie Lover: from BUTTE, MT US -- February, 12, 2020

Johnny 'Burn 'Em Up" Barnes is a race car driver of wealthy means. Waylaid by competitors and dumped in a boxcar, Johnny befriends a hobo named Flannel (portrayed by Edwin Breece). Concurrently, the character Madge Thompson (Betty Carpenter role) is living out a secret love affair with a King Cole (Edmund Breese). This surreptitious amorous endeavor produces a child out of wedlock. Thompson raises the infant with King Cole helping when he can while keeping up appearances for his bank job. The two maintain a home and a stressful relationship. When it appears the child has been killed when it wanders onto train tracks, the couple lament. That is until it is revealed that the baby was taken safe-and-sound by Barnes while passing by in another train and raised by Johnny and Flannel. Suspicion of kidnapping threatens to send Barnes to prison when his racing rival reveals that Barnes as a kidnapper. A late entry in an automobile race will help the racer escape incarceration. Johnny Hines is known for the silent short, Speed Spook. His career floundered at the advent of the talkie era. The comedy is wise and amusing, the plotline and acting is evocative and complex. The race scenes are compelling, and the race cars are enjoyable to view in action. Definitely an enjoyable film worth the price of admission.

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Product Info

  • Sales Rank: 32,071
  • UPC: 089218766892
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

Film Collectors & Archivists: Alpha Video is actively looking for rare and unusual pre-1943 motion pictures, in good condition, from Monogram, PRC, Tiffany, Chesterfield, and other independent studios for release on DVD. We are also interested in TV shows from the early 1950s. Share your passion for films with a large audience. Let us know what you have.
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