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A Chump at Oxford (1940)

Approved | | Comedy | 16 February 1940 (USA)
As a reward for capturing a bank robber, Stan and Ollie get scholarship to Oxford, but are met with resentment by other students.

Director:

(as Alfred Goulding)

Writers:

(original story) (as Charles Rogers), (original story) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Banker
...
Dean's Servant
...
Ghost
Gerald Rogers ...
Victor Kendall ...
Student
Gerald Fielding ...
Student
Charlie Hall ...
Student (as Charles Hall)
...
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Storyline

With Stan in drag, the boys get jobs as a butler and maid for a dinner party at the Vandevere's. After that ends in disaster, they're reduced to sweeping streets, and accidentally capture a bank robber. The grateful bank president sends them to Oxford for a proper education. There they become victims of student pranks, getting lost in the Maze and taking over the Dean's quarters as their own. But then a knock on the head gets Stan to believing he's the famed Lord Paddington, scholar and athlete extraordinaire. Suddenly erudite and supercilious, he retains Oliver as his valet, "Fatty." Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

oxford | dean | valet | scholarship | maze | See All (28) »

Taglines:

Figuring out a grand time for you! (one-sheet poster). See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 February 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les as d'Oxford  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(copyright length) | (European)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the movie's final scenes, Stan Laurel played a snob named Lord Paddington, the only instance after 1927 in which Stan Laurel played a role not related to his Stanley character. See more »

Quotes

Student: Dirty snitchers.
Lord Paddington: Repeat that remark again.
Student: [with entire student group] Dirty snitchers!
Lord Paddington: [his ears wiggle wildly] Meredith, hold my handkerchief. Now I demand an immediate apology.
[a fight ensues]
See more »


Soundtracks

For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung a cappella by Oxford students
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User Reviews

 
Stan & Ollie at their best. Hilarious.

What a lovely gentle comedy. Laurel & Hardy are down on their luck after spectacularly failing as domestic servants (with Stan in drag as a maid) and find themselves literally "in the gutter" working as road-sweepers. They accidentally foil a bank robbery and the grateful bank manager rewards them with the one thing they most dream of, "the best education money can buy". And so off they go to Oxford University, England where the students play a series of practical jokes on them until it's discovered Stan is really Lord Paddington, a brilliant academic who lost his memory several years earlier and vanished. Some of Laurel and Hardy's full-length movies lack the brilliance of their "shorts" but this is spot on throughout. Trust me, you won't stop laughing. Hard to believe this film is now 65 years old, but it still shines. The "Oxford" scenes were shot in Hollywood as we British were rather pre-occupied in 1940 and it's kind of poignant to reflect on the terrible evil that was loose in the world while this lovely film was being created. This movie is a wonderful anglo-American co-operation just like the military alliance which, thankfully, meant that comedy could continue. I recently heard Laurel and hardy described as two very gentle gentlemen, and that sums up my feelings. God bless them both, and long may their legacy continue to bring laughter. Look out for a very young Peter Cushing as one of the spiteful students.


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