Friday, May 23, 2008

The Three Stooges Collection: Volume Two, 1937-1939

DVD Review by Kam Williams

Headline: DVD Features 24 Classic Adventures All with Moe, Larry and Curly

Generally speaking, I’ve found that The Three Stooges are a guy thing that most females just don’t get. And that’s okay, since men tend to have the same trouble understanding the appeal of TV soap operas. So, permit me to say at the outset that I understand if my lifelong love of these consummate comedians might be lost on members of the opposite sex.
I just hope that my boundless enthusiasm for the slap-happy trio doesn’t diminish my stature in anyone’s eyes, since the pleasure derived from watching them pummel each other probably derives from something primordial in male DNA which simply cannot be helped. Yes, these clowns manage to make me double over at the sight of a grown man having his pants set on fire, getting hit in the head with a hammer, having a pie thrown in his face or having his eyes poked out.
Loyal fans of the Stooges brand of comedy are apt to appreciate this hilarious collection of shorts because all 24 feature Moe, Larry and Curly, with no substitutions of Shemp, Joe Besser, Curly Joe or Joe Palma as a poor man’s replacement for Curly. Furthermore, the digitally-remastered prints offer better quality viewing than any reception I can remember being broadcast over the airwaves when I was a child.
Among the more memorable episodes included are ”Dizzy Doctors,”
“Playing the Ponies,” “Healthy, Wealthy and Dumb,” “We Want Our Mommy,” “Oily to Bed, Oily to Rise” and “Yes, We Have No Bonanza.” But none of the wafer-thin plots matter as much as the well-orchestrated comic violence designed to build in intensity to a grand finale while the proceedings are being peppered with such trademark exclamations as “Nyu, nyuk, nyuk,” “Certainly!” and “I’m warning you!”
With Father’s Day just around the corner, consider this DVD the perfect gift guaranteed to keep Dad in stitches for days on end.

Excellent (4 stars)
Black & White
Running time: 412 minutes
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

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