“Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into.”
Ollie (Oliver Hardy) is heartbroken when he learns his French sweetheart (Jean Parker) is already married. To drown his sorrows, he and his buddy Stan (Stan Laurel) join the Foreign Legion, but leave after just a few days, and are soon cited for desertion.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Jean Parker Films
- Laurel and Hardy Films
The Flying Deuces is notable as the first film Laurel & Hardy made together after leaving Hal Roach Studios, and is cited by fans as one of their best later works. Unfortunately, there’s little here to impress those who aren’t diehard fans of the duo, given that the weak storyline is uninspired, and the boys’ gags are not among their best. The one moment I did notice myself perking up was when Laurel starts strumming his bedsprings like a harp, in a clear homage to (satire of?) similar scenes by Harpo in the Marx Brothers’ films; however, this simply made me wish I was watching one of the latter titles. The final shot is mildly surreal, but certainly not worth waiting for.
Note: As a public domain title, The Flying Deuces is available for free viewing on www.archive.org.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Laurel playing his bedsprings a la Harpo
No; this one is only recommended for Laurel and Hardy fans.
One thought on “Flying Deuces, The (1939)”
Not a must.
A product of vaudeville with lots of traditional slapstick. FFs should certainly be familiar with L&H, but not necessarily with this.
Budding ffs may possibly get something out of it. But it’s a rather long 68 minutes and the climactic scene (which gives the film its title) is milked to little effect.