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Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle,
Al St. John
Roscoe and Buster operate a combination garage and fire station. In the first half they destroy a car left for them to clean. In the second half they go off on a false alarm and return to find their own building on fire.
While this is FAR from a great short from Hal Roach Studio, it is still pretty watchable and about average for a Boy Friends film. The Boy Friends series were akin to an older version of the Our Gang shorts and some of the actors were veterans of the other series (such as the be-freckled Mickey). At Roach, the Boy Friends were definitely lesser talents compared to Laurel and Hardy or even Charley Chase. As a result, their films generally are pretty forgettable and the laughs are fewer and father between.
The film starts out at Mickey's house, where he manages to irritate his very thin-skinned father. Of course, considering that Mickey has the most annoying laugh in film history and was also only second to Rondo Hatton for ugliness, I guess I can understand Dad's disgust with the boy! Anyways, despite Dad growling and arguing with his slow-witted son, he gives him the keys to his car--on the condition that he take good care of it. Of course, in a Roach film this means that the car will be damaged severely! All this is mildly funny. However, when it starts to pour, the film slows down considerably and it just isn't all that funny when the boys and their dates stumble into a home filled with evil bootleggers. Without this, this film might have gotten a score of 6, but with all action and no discernible plot, the last half greatly reduces the impact and enjoyment of the film.
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