Never Weaken combines two of Lloyd’s favorite features (at least from his shorts of the era)… skyscraper derring do and failed suicide attempts. While the former is definitely thrilling, the latter is unpleasant and, in terms of narrative, rather lazy writing.
The short starts strong, with Lloyd out to drum up business so his girlfriend (Mildred Davis) can keep her job. She’s a doctor’s assistant and Lloyd is constantly devising scams to create new patients. This adventure takes up about half Weaken‘s running time and features a great “villain” in Charles Stevenson’s bewildered police officer.
Then Lloyd discovers Davis embracing another man and the suicide kick gets started. As usual, the misfires are funny, but in questionable taste and utterly pointless. Weaken‘s got a fourth the plot it should.
The skyscraper scenes are amazing, but it’d have been better if Lloyd had just done an urban acrobat picture.
Directed by Fred C. Newmeyer; written by Hal Roach and Sam Taylor; titles by H.M. Walker; director of photography, Walter Lundin; edited by Thomas J. Crizer; produced by Roach; released by Pathé Exchange.
Starring Harold Lloyd (The Boy), Mildred Davis (The Girl), Roy Brooks (The Other Man), Mark Jones (The Acrobat) and Charles Stevenson (The Police Force).