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The Music Box (1932)

 -  Comedy | Short  -  16 April 1932 (USA)
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 4,241 users  
Reviews: 56 user | 12 critic

Like the legendary Sisyphus, deliverymen Laurel and Hardy struggle to push a large crated piano up a seemingly insurmountable flight of stairs.

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Leonard Nimoy: 1931-2015

Best known for his work on "Star Trek," actor and director Leonard Nimoy died on Friday in Los Angeles. Read our full story on his varied career, and view our memorial photo gallery.

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Title: The Music Box (1932)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

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Storyline

The Laurel & Hardy Moving Co. have a challenging job on their hands (and backs): hauling a player piano up a monumental flight of stairs to Prof. von Schwarzenhoffen's house. Their task is complicated by a sassy nursemaid and, unbeknownst to them, the impatient Prof. von Schwarzenhoffen himself. But the biggest problem is the force of gravity, which repeatedly pulls the piano back down to the bottom of the stairs. Finally, the irate Professor explodes in fury to discover the "mechanical blunderbuss" in his home, not knowing it was a surprise birthday present from his wife. Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Mr. Laurel and Mr. Hardy decided to reorganize and resupervise their entire financial structure- so they took the $3.80 and went into business.

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 April 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Caixa de Música  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to a 1960s interview with Billy Gilbert for the Blackhawk Films catalog, the object Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy had to carry up the stairs was changed from a washing machine (in the earlier silent version, Hats Off (1927)) to a piano because a piano, while heavy and massive, is also delicate. Gilbert also said that several dummy pianos were made up for the film, and a number of them were completely destroyed. He used a German accent in the film to avoid confusion with James Finlayson and Edgar Kennedy, who also played comic villains in Laurel and Hardy movies. See more »

Goofs

When the wooden crate first falls in the fountain in the master shot, it is clearly empty because it is floating. When the camera cuts to a closer shot, it has clearly been weighted down and is not floating. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Prof. von Schwarzenhoffen: Gentlemen, is there anything I can do to show you how sorry I am?
Ollie: [smiling] Just sign here.
[as he takes the top off the pen, ink explodes into the Professor's face. He chases Stan and Ollie out of the house. Fade]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Barbershop (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

The King's Horses
Music By Noel Gay and Harry Graham
Played by (Offscreen) T.Marvin Hatley
See more »

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User Reviews

A Hilarious Comedy Classic
6 July 2001 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

This is one of the great classics of comedy, with Laurel & Hardy at their very best. It has a wealth of good material, and also shows their ability to extract every possible laugh from a relatively simple situation. It also includes appearances by Billy Gilbert and Charlie Hall, two of their best supporting players.

Stan and Ollie are delivering an old-fashioned player piano (or music box) to a house at the top of a hill. They encounter one difficulty after another getting it up to the top, and when they do, their troubles are just beginning. They use the situation to set up a lot of creative gags, all delivered with excellent timing.

There isn't any description that could really do justice to this hilarious short film - if you enjoy classic comedy, you will want to see "The Music Box" for yourself, so that you can enjoy two masters of comedy at their best.


15 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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let's nit pick. rrjustron
Colorized version NostalgiaFan
The staircase-where is it? Triple-G
What's the name of the ragtime song at the beginning of the short? borbetomagus
Piano through the window rrjustron
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