The Three Stooges date back to 1925, but were in their prime in the 50s making shorts for Columbia. The personnel sometimes changed, but their dumbed-down slapstick comedy was very popular.
Seth Hayes (Larry), Will Sasso (Curly) and Chris Diamantopoulos (Moe) plays the three dopes, left as babes on the doorstep of an orphanage. They are unadoptable, so they spend their lives there. When the orphanage is going under they set out to find $830 thousand to save it.
This is very basic humour with plenty of slapping, eye-poking, falling down, bashing people with sledgehammers, etc.The Farrelly brothers, who direct and co-write, have been trying to make this film for years with everyone from Sean Penn to Jim Carrey set at one time to act in it. The Farrellys even come on just before the credits to show kids that the hammers are actually rubber and no-one really gets poked in the eye.
Only occasionally did this reviewer laugh, but then again I wasn’t a big fan when they were in their prime. However, that said, the film does a good job of capturing the spirit of their lowbrow humour. And the three actors playing the stooges put their hearts into it. There were many in the theatre laughing louder than me.
Their comedy is something of an acquired taste, but if it works for you, don’t forget that a lot of their best work (especially some of the nearly 200 shorts) is now available on DVD.
Rating: two deer out of five
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Alf Cryderman is a Red Deer freelance writer and old movie buff.