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

Monday, June 9, 2008


OUR RELATIONS (1936). Director: Harry Lachman.

In this comic masterpiece starring Laurel and Hardy the boys have dual roles as happily-married men Stan and Ollie, and their long-lost twin brothers, two single sailors, Alf and Bert. Stan and Ollie innocently enter a beer garden with their wives when they come upon two babes who are acquainted with their brothers -- and the mistaken identity mania begins, taking in everything from unpaid bar bills, run-ins with the law, to chases in fancy night clubs (which they demolish) to gangsters and cement shoes down at the docks, all of it beautifully-paced, zestily-acted, and consistently hilarious. This is probably the boys' greatest and funniest movie. Young Iris Adrian is one of the hungry gals in the beer garden, and Alan Hale is the proprietor of said establishment. Daphne Pollard and Betty Healy score as the boys' wives. James Finlayson, who frequently appeared in Laurel and Hardy movies, is Alf and Bert's shipboard buddy, Finn. He's on the broad side, as usual, but good. Sidney Toler is the captain of the ship.

Verdict: Classic comedy. ****.

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