Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Half Shot at Sunrise|
Actors: Bert Wheeler, Robert Woolsey, Dorothy Lee, George MacFarlane, Edna May Oliver
Director: Paul Sloane
Genres: Comedy, Musicals & Performing Arts, Military & War
Hilarious comedy in which Wheeler and Woolsey are two soldiers AWOL in Paris, starring Dorothy Lee. 1930/B&W/78 minutes. Alpha. 2003.
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Amusing comedy team
Seven Kitties | Blue Point, NY USA | 07/13/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Very few movies even touch on World War One. This 1930 film features the comedy team of Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey. Bert generally plays the smarter snappier of the duo, Robert plays the soft hearted, soft headed sap. The pair are AWOL in Paris, where Woolsey falls in love with Dorothy Lee's character, who is the daughter of the Colonel who would love to bring them up on charges for their antics. There's singing, there's dancing, there's slapstick, there are snappy one liners and running gags (One MP seems to have his only line as "ME TOO!") The cinematography might be a bit foreign to modern film buffs, the voices seem sharp and tinny, and some of Bert Wheeler's physical comedy (different walks etc) might initially strike a modern viewer as weird. But for the money, this is a great movie--funny, clean, and full of zaniness. I enjoy it more and more every time I watch it."
War Is Swell (?)
Seven Kitties | 07/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Half Shot..." is easily one of Wheeler and Woolsey's best early films with many unforgetable one-liners and at least two hilarious dance sequences. The delicious Dorothy Lee is Wheeler's love interest and her vivacious teenage vamp personna makes one wonder why she isn't better remembered as a spicier version of Clara Bow. This is one of the few W & W films that also provide a love interest for Bob Woolsey, an opportunity he used to great comic effect. A wonderful gift for a senior citizen, children, or anyone who enjoys campy 1930's comedy."
Half Shot Comedy
Alex Udvary | chicago, il United States | 12/10/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I never try to hide the fact that I'm not really a big fan of this comedy team but I still watch or buy their movies whenever I get the chance. Mostly because I like to collect rare movies. Wheeler and Woolsey are a mixed bag to me. So far I've seen 13 films starring the team, five of which I liked, and this is one of them. I think had this team starred in comedy shorts I might have enjoyed them more. Their brand of humor, which is outdated by today's standards, can't really sustain an hour long feature. Back in the 1930s most film critics would agree with me. It was the public that enjoyed their early films and why RKO continued to star the team in films, even though they once tried each man as a solo.
"Half Shot at Sunrise" moves at a fast enough pace where we are never really bored. Wheeler and Woolsey get in enough funny one-liners where we really don't even care about the plot. The best Wheeler and Woolsey comedies in my opinion are the one that don't concern themselves so much with the plot but just use it as an excuse for us to watch the team. Their movies "Diplomaniacs" and "Peach-O-Reno" would be classic examples. And "Half Shot at Sunrise" follows in this tradition, although not to the same funny extent.
This was the team's fourth film together and was directed by Paul Sloane, who directed one other comedy with the team, an earlier effort called "The Cuckoos" and was co-written by an uncredited "Fatty" Arbuckle, who also happened to write "The Cuckoos" as well. It was the team's first starring role, they appeared in "Rio Rita" made a year before, but had co-starring parts.
Here however the team plays a couple of soliders who are AWOL in Paris. A Col. Marshall demands the two be captured but it seems no one can find them. So instead of fighting in the war the two are seen trying to pick up woman, disgusing themselves as soliders of higher rank. And I must admit some of the banter works.
Things become slightly more complicated though when Wheeler meets Annette, who unknown to Wheeler is the daughter of Col. Marshall, and the two fall in love. Now Annette wants the two to prove themselves to her father so she and Wheeler can get married.
Meanwhile there is an on-going gag concerning Marshall cheating on his wife (Edna May Oliver, who appeared with the team in the lesser "Cracked Nuts") with Olga (Leni Stengel) and soon Wheeler and Woolsey find out about this.
But to say more about the plot is meaningless, isn't it? Fans of the comedy team will mainly be interested in simply watching the team, which is fine by me. Plus as I mentioned before the movie is not concerned with plot, it is merely interested in setting up scenes where Wheeler and Woolsey can inject their comedy.
"Half Shot at Sunrise" rates below "Diplomaniacs", "Peach-O-Reno", "Hips, Hips, Hooray!", and "Hook, Line and Sinker" but is better than "Cracked Nuts", "Girl Crazy" and "The Nitwits". In fact almost anything is better than "The Nitwits".
Bottom-line: More enjoyable than most Wheeler and Woolsey comedies because it doesn't concern itself so much with plot. It gives the team lots of room to do their comedy, which is dated. Has a harmless quality to it and lots of spirit."