December 10, 1934 [Men in Black, Three Little Pigskins, Horse Feathers, Duck Soup]

"For duty and humanity!" crow the Three Stooges, chowder-headed "men in black" who systematically tear to confetti the Hippocratic Oath, doing all kinds of harm. And they are not alone: the Marx Brothers also have had at it—Duck Soup last year a model of the surreal wise-crack (at home we are still fond of intoning in mock disgust, "Go, and never darken my towels again!"); but in Three Little Pigskins the Stooges are no longer merely Ted Healy's, well, stooges, but Three Stooges in their own right, self-made pan-handlers vainly trying to convince pedestrians that there's a Depression going on.

And they're right: Franklin D. has given me great solace, but Groucho, Moe and Co. have turned the Depression into anarchy's straight man, set up for a fall we may not see for years—but on the screen tumbling beautifully, greased with seltzer-water and pelted with fruits and vegetables. Borrowing their cue from the Marx Brothers' Horse Feathers, the Stooges, mistaken for the "Three Horsemen of Boulder Dam," find themselves first the object of female attention—dolled up in dressing gowns after getting all wet (the Stooges, not the dames), pitching woo in pig-Latin—then the object of gridiron scorn, playing pat-a-cake with the rules and whatever dignity the sport might ever have had.
Imagine all of them, Stooges and Marxes, whooping it up together, breaking mirrors like Max Linder, howling down corridors and hot-cha-cha-ing their way to a giddy dictatorship that burns no Reichstags, just Edgar Kennedy and his derby. A prospect too terrible to behold; instead, like Rufus T. Firefly, "I'm going back and clean the crackers out of my bed; I'm expecting company."


  1. Never such a movie...except in Bollywood....I bow in gratitude..


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