Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Friday, April 25, 2008


AIR RAID WARDENS (1943). Director: Edward Segdwick.

On December 7th, 1941, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy want to enlist in the Army but are turned down by every branch of the services. Therefore they decide to help out on the home front and become air raid wardens. A series of misadventures lead to them being thrown out of the corps, but they come across a nest of Nazi spies and somehow manage to save the day. This charming, amusing film, while not a masterpiece, features the boys at the top of their form, likable schnooks who are seen as hideous misfits by the less tolerant of the small town's citizens. There are some hilarious moments in the film, as well as a good supporting cast, including Donald Meek as Eustace Middling, who is a German spy. Horace (Stephen) McNally is the newspaper publisher and Howard Freeman, Nella Walker, and Edgar Kennedy are some of their foils.

Verdict: Lots of laughs. ***.

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