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

Thursday, August 23, 2012


Walter Woolf King and Eric Blore
SWISS MISS (1938). Director: John G. Blystone.

"A swiss miss went scheeing down a mountain side.
One day she went "he-ing" and became my bride.
So now she sits at St. Moritz and waits for me but I can't get over the Alps!" 

Stan and Ollie (Laurel and Hardy) are trying to sell mouse traps in the Swiss Alps, but not having very much luck at it. Given worthless currency to buy out their business, they order everything they can eat at an inn but have to go to work in the place to pay the bill. Also at the inn is composer Victor Albert (Walter Woolf King), who wants peace and quiet to compose his operetta. Instead his soprano wife, Anna (Della Lind) shows up and proves a distraction. In the meantime there are amusing scenes with Stan and a lovable St. Bernard, not to mention  a classic sequence in which the fellows try to transport a piano across a shaky rope bridge scanning a deep chasm. In the full 72 minute version of the film [not the abridged 66 minute version that has been shown by Turner Classic Movies] we also get to see Walter Woolf King and assistant Eric Blore camping it up as they sing the catchy number "I Can't Get Over the Alps." This is a funny, charming movie with the comedy team in top form, ably assisted by an enthusiastic supporting cast.

Verdict: The piano scene alone is worth the price of admission and "Alps" is an added bonus. ***.

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