Completing Curly's best films (yes there are still more to c
Paul J. Mular | San Carlos, CA USA | 07/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This set completes the better Curly shorts, towards the end of this set he started suffering mini-strokes and the effects show on screen. But for the most part, Curly is still full of energy!
The 21 shorts are:
They Stooge to Conga (wartime. Moe disguises as Hitler!)
Back From The Front (wartime)
Three Little Twerps
Higher Than A Kite (wartime)
I Can Hardly Wait (one of the weaker ones, Curly has a bad tooth)
Dizzy Pilots (wartime)
A Gem Of A Jam
Crash Goes The Hash
The Yoke's on Me (wartime stereotypes)
Gents Without Cents (features "Niagara Falls" routine)
No Dough Boys (wartime)
Three Pests In A Mess (nice cemetery comedy for Halloween)
Booby Dupes (wartime joke at the end of this non-wartime comedy. Stooges go fishing.)
Idiots Deluxe (first evidence of Curly's mini-strokes & 1st with black title-card)
If a Body Meets a Body
Micro-Phonies (still a classic, even with the mini-stroke)
--A word about Curly's decline:
Curly would go on to film 10 more shorts in the next year, but none of them equaled the quality of these.
Even the last three shorts of this set show the signs of health problems.
In IDIOTS DELUXE the failing health starts to show in Curly's face, but his voice is still stong & energetic.
IF A BODY MEETS A BODY shows the first full signs of a stroke. Not only has Curly's face changed, but his voice has now dropped & speach patterns become more labored. His energy levels have dropped noticably (a body double is used near the end).
MICROPHONIES gives hope for a recovery. Curly still lacks his old energy but he seems enthused and energized with the script. However his voice & face remain the same.
The real devastations will show up in the next set as Curly is unable to finish 1946'S BEER BARREL POLECATS, leaving only half a short filmed and forcing the director to pad out the film with 8 minutes of stock footage from earlier films. I don't know if this health-related sortcut gave Columbia the idea to save money on future Shemp Shorts by using large segments of stock footage, but it is the start of a bad trend at Columbia Short Subjects Department. The future arrival of Shemp forced Columbia to stop this for a while as Curly footage could not fit well in a Shemp film.
Well, more on this when volume 5 comes out.
***STOOGES V.S. STOOGE***
One problem I have with some of the last comedies in this set is the scripts putting stooge against stooge, breaking up the team.
In IDIOTS DELUXE Larry & Curly take Moe to court for beating them up. The short then goes into the story of why Moe did this. The story itself is top form Stooge comedy. I can just imagine the brainstorming session in the story room: "Hey what if the boys get tired of Moe hitting them and take him to court! That would be a new twist."
IF A BODY MEETS A BODY starts on an off note with Larry & Moe getting tired of Curly's foolishness and telling him to leave. A sobbing Curly packs to go when Larry & Moe see a newspaper article announcing the search for a missing heir to a fortune: Curly Q. Link. Suddenly Moe & Larry want Curly to be their friend again & appologize.
I always thought of the Stooges as tight friends, through slap & eye poke. Basically they are one being to me, not three individuals. It is a down note for me to see them fighting against each other, even if it is a story plot device."
More Stooges Please!
Steven R. Green | Huntsville, Al | 08/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I agree with the others who are asking that Sony continue with all the Stooge shorts and not stop with just the Curly episodes. I can promise that I'll be here buying them until the bitter end myself! I had given up hope of ever owning a full good quality set of the shorts until these DVD's came along.
Another Great Collection!
Chuck Potocki | Highland, Indiana | 10/11/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sony Pictures is doing an excellent job with releasing the Stooges' films & have done so again in fine fashion with Volume Four! As described on the DVD box, these films represent the final years with Curly before a series of strokes forced him to retire from the act in 1946. This is evidenced in the last couple of shorts from 1945, especially in "If A Body Meets A Body", where it's painfully evident by watching Curly that his mannerisms have slowed & his speech has begun to slur.
Hopefully Sony will continue with the remarkable roll they've been on in releasing the shorts in order, especially the ones with Shemp shorts & even with Joe Besser.
More adventures of Moe,Larry and Curly
andy8047 | Nokomis,Florida | 08/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This fourth installment of THE THREE STOOGES COLLECTION brings Moe,Larry and Curly in their adventures of the last of World War II. In THEY STOOGE TO CONGA,Moe,his brother Curly and Larry come around to repair an ill-functioning doorbell and replace wires on a telephone pole. Again,in one scene,we'll see Moe posing as Germany dictator Adolph Hitler,subbing for a framed photo,or painting of Hitler! DIZZY DETECTIVES begins with stock footage from 1935's PARDON MY SCOTCH,where the boys install a door in a drugstore. Curly does some power-sawing on the floor,with Moe underneath the not-yet-installed door and Curly saws a hole in the floor causing Moe to fall through downstairs. In the original scene,Larry tells Moe,"You only fell 14 feet!". They then receive word that they've been hired to join the local police force. They encounter a gorilla who is learning to rob like his owner and his gang members. BACK FROM THE FRONT is one of a few war-themed shorts with the boys on a ship,paying a short visit to their girlfriends' home while on a furlough. Again,we'll see Moe as Hitler,complete with square moustache. In SPOOK LOUDER,the boys have been hired to sublet an inventor's home while he travels to Washington,D.C. A trio of crooks in Halloween costumes plan to rob the home. In THREE LITTLE TWERPS,the poster-pasting Stooges join the circus. In another war-themed short,HIGHER THAN A KITE,the boys are service station attendants and end up politicians in Germany. Curly breaks a tooth(molar) in I CAN HARDLY WAIT. An exploding dynamite stick didn't cure Curly's toothache,nor did a pushed door(with a string around the knob with the other end of the string around Curly's aching tooth). But a punch in the mouth from Moe did! The tooth was extracted as a result of the punch. In DIZZY PILOTS,the Stooges are the Wrong brothers,inventors of a revolutionary aircraft,an idea that never came to the minds of the real-life Wright Brothers. They end up in the army after the aircraft failed to meet standards(stock footage from 1940's BOOBS IN ARMS). The Stooges are wanted for vagrancy in PHONY EXPRESS. In A GEM OF A JAM,the boys are custodians ordered by two gangsters to perform necessary surgery on their friend. In CRASH GOES THE HASH,the boys are hired by a newspaper editor to get a story on a widow's engagement. Her foreign fiance robs her safe and is later arrested. The boys receive $100 each and Curly receives an added prize:the widow's hand. In BUSY BUDDIES,to pay an outstanding debt,Moe and Larry enter Curly in a cow-milking contest. Moe and Larry don the two-man cow costume with Moe distributing the milk from a large container. Curly is disqualified after giving Moe and Larry away. In THE YOKE'S ON ME,the boys run a farm and a group of Japanese men steal pumpkins. The Stooges are bellboys in IDLE ROOMERS and discover a gorilla who later operates the elevator the Stooges ride. The boys meet their upstairs neighbors and later marry Flo,Mary and Shirley in GENTS WITHOUT CENTS. The boys posing as Japanese men fight real Japanese men in NO DOUGH BOYS. The boys receive a patent for their fly-catching invention in THREE PESTS IN A MESS. In BOOBY DUPES,the seafood-retailing Stooges plan to catch their own to sell after buying a boat which they end up wrecking. In IDIOTS DeLUXE,Moe is tried in court for mayhem(physically abusing Moe and Larry) and is later acquitted. In IF A BODY MEETS A BODY,Curly Q. Link's uncle Bob O. Link has died and Curly anxiously awaits his monetary inheritance(his sister Liza receives the $1,250,000 and Curly receives the 67 cent change!). In MICRO-PHONIES,Curly,in drag,lip-synchs a woman's recording of VOICES OF SPRING. A foreign man gives Curly away at a party("Look,peoples! Just a big fake!"). This is dedicated to the memories of Moe(1897-1975),Larry(1902-1975) and Curly(1903-1952)."