Buster Keaton: the art of the gag

9 minutes

Why Buster Keaton’s visual comedy is still the best in a century-plus of cinema

From the meticulous geometric framing of Wes Anderson to the droll deadpan of Bill Murray, the influence of Buster Keaton’s comedy still ripples throughout popular culture. This video essay is part of the US filmmaker Tony Zhou’s Every Frame a Painting series, and it details how Keaton’s work helped to shape the visual language of film and on-screen comedy, dissecting just why his gags still amaze and amuse nearly a century after he first transformed motion pictures.

Director: Tony Zhou

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