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(Review originally written at 15 February 2006)

This was the first full-length movie from Laurel & Hardy, that last over 1 hour long. Their first effort is definitely one of their better ones.

Difference with most other Laurel & Hardy movies is that this one actually has a story and continuity in it. It's more than just one slapstick and comical moment after another and it's obvious that they definitely put lots of effort in the story. The movie is constantly funny although the movie could had done without those musical numbers in my opinion. It's extremely old fashioned and takes the pace right out of the movie.

Besides the two boys the movie also has some other memorable characters in it such as Wilfred Lucas as the jail warden, James Finlayson as the jail schoolteacher and Walter Long as fellow prisoner The Tiger. Especially Walter Long stands out in his role and he plays an extremely fun character who of course gives the two an hard time.

The movie is very fine constructed and build up to the memorable ending in which one big jail break is attempted. It's pretty violent stuff for Laurel & Hardy standards and I had never thought that I would ever see the two of them holding a gun. The ending is almost action movie like but it of course is also extremely hilarious at the same time.

There are quite some returning running gags in the movie that all help to make this movie a very memorable one. Also enough slapstick humor is present so fans of that will also be delighted with this movie.

9/10

About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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