Oliver's in trouble with his wife after missing a payment on their furniture, having given the money to Stanley, who used it instead to pay Mrs. Hardy for his room and board. While doing ... See full summary »
Stan and Ollie are down on their luck and beg at an old lady's house for food. While they are eating they overhear a villainous landlord (Finlayson) threatening to evict her if she does not... See full summary »
Chimney sweeps Stanley and Oliver go about their job, reducing Professor Noodle's living room to a shambles in the process, while the mad doctor works in his laboratory perfecting his "... See full summary »
Oliver's house is in a shambles after a wild party, and his wife is due home at noon. He calls Stanley to help him fix the place up, and the typical catastrophies ensue. Somehow, however, ... See full summary »
Stan and Ollie take a trip into the mountains ('the high multitude') so that Ollie can recover from gout. Bootleggers have dumped their moonshine in the well from which the boys sample ... See full summary »
Plans for a nice Sunday picnic seemed doomed even before Stanley and Oliver and their families get into the car. First the boys get into a fight and destroy all the sandwiches. Then the car... See full summary »
The boys' Army buddy, Eddie Smith, is killed in the trenches in France, leaving his baby girl an orphan. Back home after Armistice, they try to find Eddie's father and turn the child over ... See full summary »
Mrs. Hardy is irate that her husband Oliver spends more time with his friend Stanley than with her. Oliver decides to adopt a baby, hoping that it will keep his wife occupied so that he and... See full summary »
Ordered out of town by angry Judge Beaumont, vagrants Stanley and Oliver meet a congenial drunk who invites them to stay at his luxurious mansion. The drunk can't find his key, but the boys... See full summary »
Oliver's in trouble with his wife after missing a payment on their furniture, having given the money to Stanley, who used it instead to pay Mrs. Hardy for his room and board. While doing the dishes, Stanley convinces Oliver to withdraw the family savings and buy the furniture outright. But they accidentally squander it at an auction, purchasing a grandfather clock which gets smashed on the way home. Mrs. Hardy's reaction sends Oliver to the hospital, where a blood transfusion from Stanley produces confusing results. Written by
Paul Penna <email@example.com>
Having previously played their own twins, their own children, and each other's wives, there was nothing left for them to do but play each other at the end of this short. Laurel gets to do a Hardy tie twiddle, and Hardy the Laurel cry. See more »
The concluding short of an unrefined comedic legacy
Thicker Than Water is another Laurel and Hardy short directed by James W. Horne, and while the actors and producers of these silent/early-talkie shorts get much more credit than the directors behind them, something must be said about Horne's involvement with the Laurel and Hardy shorts, predominately the ones in the late twenties and early-to-mid-thirties. For starters, Horne's shorts, speaking of this particular one and Big Business from 1929, have the narrative consistency of being manic and developing a one-thing-leads-to-another scenario, stockpiled with hilarious mixups and misunderstandings. Then there's the fact that both of these shorts have the ability to keep accelerating in their zaniness, in such a way that is hilarious to watch and never burdensome or overbearing.
Thicker Than Water concerns Stan and Ollie, who are just about to head to the local baseball game when Ollie's wife (Daphne Pollard) scolds Ollie for ditching her with all the dishes and forces both men to wash them before leaving. After a hilarious scene, exercising Horne's directorial formula of filming various things accelerate into complete chaos, a man shows up to collect payment for some furniture Ollie and his wife bought. Following a miscommunication in funds, Stan and Ollie must withdraw the couple's savings from the bank to buy the furniture.
The scene doesn't stop there, with a whole new set of craziness awaiting at a local auction house, followed by the inevitable scolding of Stan and Ollie by Mrs. Hardy when they arrive home. Thicker Than Water shows an exuberant amount of comedic energy on part of its performers, as almost every Laurel and Hardy short does in some way, and, thanks to the incredible situational and slapstick writing by Stan Laurel and Frank Tashlin, Thicker Than Water never becomes tired or redundant in its pursuit of laughs and potboiler comedy. As the final short that featured both men in starring roles, it may not be what everyone was expecting, but it certainly is a hilarious offering. If only maybe Laurel and Hardy knew their career together was over would they have tried to conclude their work with a bang.
Starring: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, and Daphne Pollard. Directed by: James W. Horne.
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