(Review originally written at 20 October 2006)

This movie combines everything that made other Laurel & Hardy pictures so great and such a delight to watch; slapstick humor, crazy situations, well written dialog and a good comedy story. This movie has it all and therefor this movie can truly be regarded as perhaps the most definite Laurel & Hardy picture around.

The movie has a classic comedy story. It's very simple and it has been used in many different other variations before and after this movie but it's extremely effective. It's another fine mess the boys get themselves into after they secretly go to a convention of the 'sons of the desert' in Chicago after fooling their wives, by telling them that they are going to Honolulu to 'cure' Oliver's faked illness. However when the steam-liner the boys were supposed to be on sinks, the boys can't go home without letting their wives know were they truly had been. In between they also get themselves into some silly humorous trouble, which this time also involves fellow comedian Charley Chase, who was the brother of regular Laurel & Hardy picture director James Parrott.

This is not necessarily the movie with the best or most Laurel & Hardy jokes or slapstick moments in it but it's the whole package of the movie that makes this one such a great and enjoyable one that deserves a position among the greatest comedies of all time. It combines all of the best elements out of Laurel & Hardy movies and the end result is an hilarious, easy and pleasant to watch movie, from start till finish, that never loses any of its power.

The trouble the boys get themselves into is of course silly and therefor also extremely fun at the same time. It's the sort of simple light hearted comedy we unfortunately see so little anymore in movies these days. All of the silly moments are very well build up and executed in the movie and timed. It also is of course thanks to the talent of Oliver Hardy and Stanley Laurel that all the moments work out so well and effective in a comical way. They make the simple story work out way more effective than you could ever anticipate. The movie is also helped by some well written comical dialog. This movie perhaps has the most dialog gags out of all the Laurel & Hardy pictures that are still around.

Even the slower moments of the movie never get boring, thanks to the energetic comedy acting from Stanley Laurel and Oliver Hardy. Laurel & Hardy regular Mae Busch also shows up again as Mrs. Hardy. Busch is always a pleasure to watch in any Laurel & Hardy movie and was a real great comedy talent.

All in all, this might very well be the best and most definitive Laurel & Hardy picture ever made, that deserved to be ranked among other comedy classics.


About Frank Veenstra

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