The gang is putting on a show with Alfalfa billed as "King of the Crooners." But Alfalfa abandons the show saying his crooning days are over, and that opera is his true calling. But after ... See full summary »
The gang is putting on a show with Alfalfa billed as "King of the Crooners." But Alfalfa abandons the show saying his crooning days are over, and that opera is his true calling. But after taking a nap and dreaming of a successful future in popular music, he changes his mind and joins the rest of the gang for the closing number. Written by
Thomas McWilliams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
For the long medium close-up where he gets bombarded with tomatoes, hard cabbage, lettuce, etc. while trying to sing "The Barber of Seville," Carl 'Alfalfa' Switzer was told he would only be hit with soft tomatoes. Of course, when filming started, he found out the opposite. The anger seen on-screen is not acting; after the shot was done, Alfalfa grabbed his brother Harold Switzer and said, "C'mon, Harold; let's go kick their ass," and a fight almost broke out between cast and crew members. It is speculated that the vegetable toss (which was done by the crew members for this shot, not the kid opera attendees seen in the wide shot) was payback by the crew for having had to endure the pranks, tantrums, and other mischief Alfalfa regularly caused on the Our Gang sets. See more »
After Alfalfa is pelted with produce, his face is clearly a mess from it, but when he is immediately sent out by his boss to collect money on street corners, his face is clean again. See more »
[to Alfalfa, Oliver-Hardy-style]
"Slave to his art"... umph!
See more »
Unlike most other Hal Roach comedies released through MGM, this one features an unusual opening title: "Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer presents 'Our Gang Follies of 1938,' a Hal Roach Production," as opposed to the usual "Hal Roach Presents" title line. This short also features unique title cards, when the series had by this time converted over to standardized title cards. See more »
More of what made the later Our Gang films less enjoyable than the previous ones....
Alfalfa tries to get a recording contract with an honest to goodness company. The adults there have fun with him and give him a contract--for 20 years in the future! Alfalfa thinks this means he'll be a star and soon dreams of great fame--singing songs like "The Barber of Seville" and the like. And, interestingly, in his dream he is 20 years older--but looks exactly like he does back in 1937. The dream, however, turns out to be a nightmare.
With the addition of Alfalfa and Darla to the cast of regulars came a marked change in the types of shorts made by Hal Roach. Instead of focusing exclusively on laughs, the newer ones often had singing and dancing. To make it worse, Alfalfa's horrible singing, while initially a passable gag, was featured too often--trying to generate cheap laughs. I am sure that the popularity drop of these kids can be attributed, in part, to the studio losing sight of what made the films popular in the first place--the kids acted like kids. No sane child acts like Alfalfa, that's for sure!! And as for Darla, but I always thought she looked plasticized--and a bit creepy--not a real child in any way.
This is the second Our Gang Follies film--the first being "Our Gang Follies of 1936". While this one has a bit more plot than the last, it is essentially chock full of singing and dancing. I can't see how children in the movie theaters would enjoy all this singing and dancing--but the parts of the film without that are pretty cute. Unfortunately, the momentum is constantly derailed by the insane need to do all the show tunes and wriggling--yuck! Pretty tough going in this one.
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