Tornado scene (Steamboat Bill, Jr., 1928)
Steamboat Bill, Jr. follows college boy William Canfield Jr. (Buster Keaton) who reunites with his boat captain father in a Mississippi River town. Though flummoxed by William’s citified appearance, the elder Canfield finds an ally in his son as he competes with fellow riverboat owner John James King (Tom McGuire). William eventually falls for King’s daughter, Mary (Marion Byron), but his priorities change when the weather suddenly turns bad and his father is arrested.
The Charles Reisner-directed silent comedy is best known for what may be Keaton’s most famous film stunt: The facade of an entire house falls all around him while he stands in the perfect spot to pass through the open attic window. The mathematically precise tornado scene is without a doubt one of the most dangerous movie stunts ever, as a mistake of an inch or two in Keaton’s position would have injured or killed him.