Billy Gilbertson

Block-Heads (1938) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson, Billy Gilbertson

Block-Heads (1938) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson, Billy Gilbert

Block-Heads (1938) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson, Billy Gilbert

Block-Heads is one of Laurel and Hardy‘s best films, a very rapid series of funny skits, strung together with a simple story.  Set in 1938, decades after the end of World War I, Stan Laurel is still in the trenches, fighting the war!  He is brought home to America and given a place to stay in a soldier’s home — and his old Army buddy, Oliver Hardy, decides to pick him up and bring him to Ollie’s house for a home-cooked meal. And so, the carnage begins … (more…)

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Their First Mistake - Oliver Hardy and Stan Laurel return home with the baby

Their First Mistake

Movie review of Their First Mistake (1932), starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Mae Busch

Their First Mistake - Oliver Hardy and Mae Busch happily at homeTheir First Mistake is a very funny Laurel and Hardy short film, where Oliver Hardy‘s wife, played by Roach Studios regular Mae Busch, is upset that he’s spending all of his free time with his pal Stan Laurel, and none of it with her.  At that moment, Stan calls Oliver with an offer to go out that evening, and Oliver tries to cover by pretending that it’s his new boss, Mr. Jones, inviting him out for a meeting with some company bigwigs.  It backfires when Stanley comes in to explain that it wasn’t Mr. Jones on the telephone, it was him! A very funny scene, and one that’s stuck in my mind since I first saw it nearly 20 years ago. (more…)

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The Chimp, starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Billy Gilbert, James Finlayson

The Chimp

review of The Chimp (1932) starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Billy Gilbert

Laurel and Hardy‘s The Chimp is reminiscent of another of their short films, Laughing Gravy, where the bulk of the film deals with them trying to hide a pet (in this case, a gorilla) from their landlord.  The Chimp begins with Laurel and Hardy working at a circus, where Hal Roach Studio regular James Finlayson is the ringmaster.  Strangely enough, however, Finlayson is not their primary antagonist in the film.  Instead, after a short, but very funny, bit where Stan and Ollie are working as a pantomime horse, and then as assistants to “Destructo” the circus strong man.  My favorite bit from the movie, in fact, is their “helping” the circus strong man with his act, ruining it.  Ending with destroying the circus by firing a cannon through the circus tent. (more…)

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County Hospital (1932), starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy

County Hospital

County Hospital (1932), starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy

County Hospital - Oliver Hardy relaxing in hospital bedStan Laurel has nothing better to do, so he decides to visit his friend Oliver Hardy, who’s recovering from a broken leg in the hospital.  The introduction is quite humorous, as the clueless Stan looks for Ollie in the wrong places, including the maternity ward — a classic moment.  Eventually, he finds his way to Oliver’s room, where Oliver is enjoying himself immensely, enjoying his quiet, relaxing time in the hospital.

Olivery Hardy, Billy Gilbertson, Stan Laurel - County Hospital - chaos due to Stan LaurelSoon after Stan’s arrival, the peace and quiet go “out the window” — quite literally.  First, he drops a boiled egg in Oliver’s water pitcher, and in the process of retrieving it, he pours the water all over.  Next, when Ollie’s physician, played by classic comic actor Billy Gilbert, comes in to check on his favorite patient, Stan beings playing with the weight attached to Oliver’s hospital bed (keeping his broken leg elevated).  (more…)

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