Movie reviews

The Music Box (1932), starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Billy Gilbert

The Music Box [Laurel and Hardy]

The Music Box (1932), starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Billy Gilbert

Synopsis of The Music Box

In The Music Box, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy are furniture movers with a simple task.  All they have to do is deliver a piano.  Up a long flight of steps.  While the piano keeps rolling down the steps at every opportunity.  And having to deal with the reluctant customer (more…)

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Jitterbugs (1943) starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, Bob Bailey, Vivian Blaine

Jitterbugs

Jitterbugs (1943) starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, Bob Bailey, Vivian Blaine

Jitterbugs (1943) starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, Bob Bailey, Vivian Blaine

Jitterbugs is, hands down, one of the funniest Laurel and Hardy films that I’ve ever seen. The jitterbug ending, especially, is laugh out loud hilarious — literally. The movie begins with Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy driving across the country as not-too-successful musicians, and are soon picked up by a likable con man (Bob Bailey) who uses the unwitting duo to sell his bogus “gas pill” (think free gasoline) at every stop — and soon have lots of dissatisfied people chasing them. (more…)

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The Dancing Masters, starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy

The Dancing Masters

The Dancing Masters, starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Trudy Marshall, Robert Bailey, Margaret Dumont

Editorial review of The Dancing Masters courtesy of Amazon.com

This Laurel and Hardy vehicle casts Stan and Ollie as the proprietors of the “Arthur Hurry” dance studio. Despite a rather sizeable student body, the boys would starve to death were it not for their only paying customer, socialite Trudy Harlan (Trudy Marshall). Trudy is in love with Grant Lawrence (Robert Bailey), an aspiring inventor who needs financial backing for his revolutionary new flame thrower. (more…)

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Laurel and Hardy's comedy, The Bohemian Girl

The Bohemian Girl

The Bohemian Girl (1936) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Mae Busch, James Finlayson, Thelma Todd

Laurel and Hardy's comedy, The Bohemian Girl

Many people think of The Bohemian Girl as the answer to the trivia question, “What was Thelma Todd‘s final film?”  €”And that’s a crying shame.  The Bohemian Girl is actually one of my favorite Laurel and Hardy films, for several reasons.  It’s quick-paced, with some excellent comedic bits between Stan and Ollie.  The interplay between Oliver Hardy and Mae Busch (who plays his nagging, unfaithful wife) is very funny, with their perennial foil James Finlayson making an appearance at the end as “Captain Finn”, captain of the guard for the harsh Count Arnheim. (more…)

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Two Tars (1928) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Edgar Kennedy, Charlie Hall, Thelma Hill, Ruby Blaine

Two Tars

Two Tars (1928) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Edgar Kennedy, Charlie Hall, Thelma Hill, Ruby Blaine

Two Tars (1928) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Edgar Kennedy, Charlie Hall, Thelma Hill, Ruby BlaineTwo Tars is a classic Laurel and Hardy short film, dealing with a basic concept.  Stan and Ollie are two sailors on leave, who simply want to go on a date with their respective girlfriends.  They rent a car and get stuck in a traffic jam.  It’s the tit for tat escalating destruction between the irate motorists that make this a comedy classic. (more…)

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The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy: A Study of the Chaotic Making and Marketing of Atoll K,

The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy

Book Description: The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy: A Study of the Chaotic Making and Marketing of Atoll K

The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy: A Study of the Chaotic Making and Marketing of Atoll K,The remarkable story behind the planning, development and marketing of Laurel and Hardy‘s ill-received final film, Atoll K, has been little explored. Details on the script development, cast, crew, locations, and even basic information on running times and release dates have been sketchy at best since the film’s 1951 release. This work reconstructs the circumstances surrounding this unusual international co-production (Atoll K was a French-Italian film with English-speaking stars). Through lost documents detailing the film’s production and funding, previously unreleased behind-the-scenes photos, and a rare interview with French movie star Suzy Delair, the author explores the continuous changes to the film’s script during its chaotic production and the final marketing of the film’s many different versions (Atoll K was also released as Robinson Crusoeland in the United Kingdom and as Utopia in the United States). Several appendices detail alternative sequences and cut scenes in various versions of the film and include French box-office reports from 1951 to 1952 as well as a complete filmography. (more…)

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Putting Pants on Philip - movie poster - Oliver Hardy, Stan Laurel

Putting Pants on Philip

Putting Pants on Philip (1927) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy

The basic plot of Putting Pants on Philip deals with the stuffy J. Piedmont Mumblethunder (Oliver Hardy) meeting his Scottish nephew, Philip (Stan Laurel) at the docks, where he’s arriving for a visit.  One of the funniest bits of the movie is the medical exam the ship’s doctor has to give Stan before allowing him to disembark, with Stan Laurel’s gift for physical comedy in full effect. (more…)

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Bacon Grabbers - Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy

Bacon Grabbers

Bacon Grabbers (1929) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Edgar Kennedy, Charlie Hall




If you’re familiar with the current reality TV series “Repo Men”, you should be warned that back in 1929 the term “Bacon Grabbers” meant repossession men.

The 1929 Laurel and Hardy silent short film, Bacon Grabbers, deals with Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy working as “bacon grabbers” who have been sent to repossess a radio from Edgar Kennedy, who has fallen behind of his payments. Laurel and Hardy try to serve a subpoena to repossess it but Edgar Kennedy refuses to let them into the house.  This is the central conflict of the short film. (more…)

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They Go Boom! Oliver Hardy sneezing keeps Stan Laurel awake

They Go Boom!

They Go Boom! (1929) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Charlie Hall

They Go Boom! Oliver Hardy sneezing keeps Stan Laurel awakeIn They Go Boom!, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy are simply trying to sleep through the night in a rented room. Oliver, however, is suffering from a cold, and his sneezing is keeping Stanley awake.  Likewise, Stan’s snoring is keeping Ollie awake. Stan tries to “help” but keeps making things worse.  Things such as closing the blind, only for it to roll back up noisily.nailing a fallen picture back up only to puncture a water pipe so that Oliver gets soaked, making a “plaster” for Ollie’s chest (that ends up on his bottom instead), and making a foot bath of hot water (with something else mixed in the water), etc.

They Go Boom! Oliver Hardy sufferingStan tries to coat Oliver’s throat with medicine, having Ollie accidentally swallow the thing, nearly choking in the process. Adding insult to injury, Oliver’s air mattress becomes deflated.  They try to re-inflate it, eventually trying to use gas to inflate it …  A point that becomes important later on. (more…)

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Walter Long, Oliver Hardy, Stan Laurel in The Live Ghost

The Live Ghost

Laurel and Hardy’s The Live Ghost (1934) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Walter Lang

On one hand, The Live Ghost is a very typical Laurel and Hardy short film – in fact, it co-stars all of the Roach Studio players that we typically find in a Laurel and Hardy film (Walter Long as the gruff sea captain, Arthur Housman as an inebriated sailor, Charlie Hall as another sailor and Mae Busch as the “floozy”) except for James Finlayson.  The basic plot has Walter Long as a gruff sea captain, who’s having trouble hiring sailors to work on his ship, since it has a reputation for being haunted.  He hires Laurel and Hardy to help him shanghai a crew (in a very funny extended scene, with Stan and Ollie and a bag of boiled eggs), ending with not only the sailors being shanghaied but Laurel and Hardy as well. (more…)

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