This early comedy short has Bob Hope and John Berkes putting on sailor uniforms to find dates, getting mistaken for real sailors and being dragged back to a Navy ship by the shore patrol. ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Bobby
John Berkes ...
Johnnie (as Johnnie Berkes)
Oscar Ragland
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Storyline

This early comedy short has Bob Hope and John Berkes putting on sailor uniforms to find dates, getting mistaken for real sailors and being dragged back to a Navy ship by the shore patrol. Though not much plot, the short does give each star a chance to shine doing comedy bits both together and separately. Written by laird-3

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Genres:

Short | Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

25 March 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big V Comedies (1935-1936 season) (#12): Calling All Tars  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Douglas' on-screen film debut. See more »

Soundtracks

A Life on the Ocean Wave
(uncredited)
Music by Henry Russell
Played when the sailors have to leave the restaurant
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User Reviews

Bob Hope and Johnny WHO?
25 February 2002 | by (Minffordd, North Wales) – See all my reviews

"Calling All Tars" isn't very funny, but it shows Bob Hope while he was still developing his on screen character, and the film offers a tantalising glimpse of Johnny Berkes, who also appeared with Hope in one other short film. Berkes was a little man with a big nose who played wiseguy Brooklyn types: he's very similar to Jimmy Durante, and Berkes shows a great deal of talent in his two Bob Hope movies.

In this short comedy, Bob and Johnny play wiseguys who dress up as sailors because they think it will help them pick up girls. (No comment.) A shore patrolman comes along and mistakes them for AWOL sailors. The two counterfeit gobs are brought to a navy ship and put to work swabbing the deck.

The most interesting thing about this film is its format: in the first scene Hope and Berkes perform together as a cross-talk comedy team, with both men getting equal emphasis and sharing the funny lines. Just when we think that they're working as a team, Berkes disappears and Hope is working solo. Then, when it looks like Bob Hope is the star of this film, he disappears and the action cuts back to Johnny Berkes doing a solo comedy routine. The studio seemed to be giving equal treatment to both comedians: Bob Hope clicked with the public, but Johnny Berkes didn't. It's a shame that this film is the peak of Berkes's career, because he showed real talent (despite his unpleasant physical appearance) as a brash Durante-like comedian.


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