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So You Want to Be a Gladiator (1955)

Joe thinks he's back in the gladiator days, and finds himself sentenced to be thrown to the Coliseum lions after breaking a string while playing the lyre for King Nero. His friend Homer ... See full summary »

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(as Richard Bare)

Writer:

(as Richard Bare)
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Cast

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George O'Hanlon ...
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Storyline

Joe thinks he's back in the gladiator days, and finds himself sentenced to be thrown to the Coliseum lions after breaking a string while playing the lyre for King Nero. His friend Homer says he will disguise himself as a lion, but Homer gets sidetracked and Joe goes out to meet a real lion with his lyre as his only weapon. But he wins out and is awarded a slave girl as his prize, until his wife steps in. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Genres:

Comedy | Short

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Release Date:

12 March 1955 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Follows So You Want to Be an Actor (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

I Know That You Know
(uncredited)
Music by Vincent Youmans
Played during the opening credits and at the end
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User Reviews

 
Roamin' Far From Hollywood. Warner Brothers & the USA.
27 February 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

SO WE SEE yet another attempt at expanding the MC DOAKESIAN reach into yet another realm. Without any fanfare, publicity or explanation, we open to find that Joe (George O'Hanlon) and Alice (Jane Frazee) have been transported back to Ancient Rome.

THE TREATMENT OF the subject matter is much in the same vein as was that of the Hanna-Barbera rendering of the animated series, THE FLINTSTONES, some 5 years later. The personalities remain the same, but the setting and time period are changed.

IN THE MIX as well is what one would expect from a Columbia Pictures THREE STOOGES Two Reeler. The time proved custom of having the modern institutions transported in anachronistic entireties was observed as we are treated to a Gladiators' Union Organizer (Phil Van Zandt( seeking sign-ups in the dressing room backstage at the Roman Coliseum.

AS HAS BEEN the practice, this entry did a bang-up job in the casting; this time with the additional burden of assigning Roman roles to those who usually took other parts. Joe, Alice and Homer (Jackson Wheeler) were pretty much the same. Rodney Bell (usually neighbor Marvin) was cast as the Emperor 'Nero'(????) and did a great job of hamming it up; with his characterization being sort of between a Charles Laughton impersonation and Victor Buono's "King Tut" on the BATMAN TV Series about 11 years later.

ADDITIONALLY, THE CAST had semi-regulars Creighton Hale, Fred Kelsey, Jack Mower and Murray Pollack.

WE MUST MAKE mention of the presence of all around fine general purpose actor John Doucette's portrayal as the master of gladiators. Mr. Doucette is to be found in almost every film type and on television. perhaps his biggest and most visible role was that of General Lucien Truscott in PATTON (20th Century-Fox, 1970).

AS FOR THE Verdict: Both Schultz and I think we've had funnier entries, but none so set in such widely removed an era or locale. ** 1/2 Stars.


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