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Pardon Us (1931)

Passed | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 15 August 1931 (USA)
Two guys end up in prison after attempting to sell beer to a policeman during Prohibition.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Warden
...
Schoolteacher
...
The Tiger
Tiny Sandford ...
Shields - Prison Guard (as Stanley J. Sanford)
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Storyline

It's Prohibition, and the boys wind up behind bars after Stan sells some of their home-brew beer to a policeman. In prison, Stan's loose tooth keeps getting him in trouble, because it sounds like he's giving everybody a rasp- berry. But it earns him the respect of The Tiger, a rough prisoner, and the boys manage to slip away during The Tiger's escape attempt. They disguise themselves in blackface and hide on a cotton plantation, but are recaptured when the warden happens by. Back in the big house, they find themselves in a hail of bullets, caught between the state militia and gun-toting prisoners, when The Tiger tries another escape. Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The world has been waiting for THEIR FIRST FULL LENGTH TALKING PICTURE See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Musical

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

15 August 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Rap  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System) (A Victor Recording)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy's first feature-length film. Producer Hal Roach had wanted to use some of the sets left over from MGM's big-budget prison picture The Big House (1930) to do a prison-movie spoof, but discovered that it would be too expensive to make as a short subject. See more »

Goofs

Right after Stan and Ollie escape prison, they are still visible in the prison court yard. See more »

Quotes

The Tiger: Ha ha, hey, you and me is gonna be good pals.
Stanley: Thank you.
[tooth buzzes]
The Tiger: Hey, I heard you the first time. Now don't take advantage of my good humor. But if you do...
[starts to strangle Stan]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Living Famously: Laurel & Hardy (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Lazy Moon
(1903) (uncredited)
Words and Music by Bob Cole and Rosamond Johnson
Performed by Oliver Hardy and the Hall Johnson Choir
See more »

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User Reviews

Plot and structure wise it is light but it produces plenty of memorable and hilarious scenes
23 October 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Laurel and Hardy are shopping for ingredients for their next get rich scheme – making and selling liquor during prohibition. Of course when Laurel sells a bottle of beer to a policeman, there is only ever going to be one outcome and the two finds themselves on the way to the big house. Locked up with a mean spirited collection of fellas, Stan and Oliver take their chance to escape and find themselves wanted men on the run.

Having just watched the very structured "Our Relations" it was noticeable when I stepped back into the much looser Pardon Us. The basic plot is no more than a nail on which to hang a series of comic scenarios and, as such, it works because it is pretty funny for the majority. The story is pretty weak but it does allow for a solid spoof of jail clichés as well as a pretty un-PC but funny scene where the boys try to pass themselves off as cotton pickers. Despite not having this flow to it, the film does have a couple of good stand out scenes that will please everyone with their typical silliness and mix of looks and double-takes.

Laurel and Hardy are both on form and are served to their strengths well. Finlayson is wonderful in a great classroom scene and he got the biggest laughs from me with a master class in slow burns and double takes. Long is enjoyably tough as The Tiger while Lucas is a good warden. The support cast are roundly good even if they are mainly there to carry the scenes rather than the comedy. The musical numbers are obvious but still good – with Hardy getting a good chance to show off his baritone talents.

Overall a thinly plotted affair but one that delivers quite a few memorable and hilarious scenes, connected with generally amusing moments.


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