“Every man should be the king in his own castle!”
Henpecked Stan and Ollie (Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy) sneak off to a fraternity convention in Chicago, telling their wives (Mae Busch and Dorothy Christie) that they have gone to Honolulu to cure Ollie’s cold — but their ruse is soon discovered–
Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, this slapstick comedy may very well be the “definitive Laurel and Hardy film”, given that it “perfectly illustrates how Laurel and Hardy typically relate to each other and to their wives in their movies.” While it’s not my favorite L&H flick (that honor would probably go to Blockheads), it’s full of countless humorous moments: Stan blithely eating wax fruit; Stan and Ollie naively trying to convince their knowing wives that they’ve been in Honolulu; Stan and Ollie attempting to sneak into their own houses. As noted in the New York Times’ original review, Laurel and Hardy are “a Quixote and Panza in a nightmare world, where even the act of opening a door is filled with hideous perils.” This harmless pair of stooges can’t seem to help landing in a heap of trouble — and it’s great fun watching them struggle to climb back out.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- The opening sequence, in which the Exalted Ruler (John Elliott) of the Sons of the Desert — taking his position way too seriously — solemnly exhorts all members to attend the annual convention in Chicago
- Mae Busch and Dorothy Christie playing “straight (wo)men” to Laurel and Hardy’s antics
Yes. Along with Way Out West (1936) and Blockheads (1938), this is a must-see Laurel and Hardy flick. Discussed at length in Peary’s Cult Movies 3 (1988).
(Listed in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die)