Novice policemen Stanley and Oliver, eating lunch in their patrol car, nearly have their spare tire stolen by a thief and his sassy partner. They then miss the broadcast address of a ...
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It's the morning of Oliver's wedding to oil baron Peter Cucumber's daughter. While waiting for the taxi to take them to the ceremony, Oliver and his best man Stanley become absorbed in a ... See full summary »
Stan and Ollie give evidence which convicts vicious gangster Butch. They plan to leave town and advertise for a traveling companion to share expenses. Butch's girl replies to the advert and... See full summary »
Commanded to "scram" out of town by a cantankerous judge, poor vagabonds, Stan and Ollie, slip into something more comfortable to spend the night at a sympathetic inebriate's home; however, is this the right house?
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 »
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 »
Keen on climbing the social ladder by marrying a rich widow, Oliver finds the nerve to cheat on his partner, Stanley, unbeknownst to him that her favourite hobby is murder. Now, it seems that he is next. Who can save Oliver the Eighth?
A gruff sea captain, who absolutely detests the word "ghost," is having trouble manning his ship because of the rumor it's...well...haunted. He inveigles Stanley and Oliver into helping him... See full summary »
Novice policemen Stanley and Oliver, eating lunch in their patrol car, nearly have their spare tire stolen by a thief and his sassy partner. They then miss the broadcast address of a burglary in progress, and Stanley borrows the phone in a jewelry store to call the station, mistaking the safecracker inside for the shop's owner. The boys eventually manage to catch the apparent burglar and bring him back to the station, only to find it's really the police chief, who'd been locked out of his house. The chief exacts a rather dire revenge upon the two rookie cops.Written by
Paul Penna <email@example.com>
This film was originally planned to be entitled "Tickets for Two", with Lloyd French directing. That title and the original plot (about two friends attending a boxing match) was eventually dropped and the project evolved into a story about two policeman. Lloyd French was retained as director. Before its release as "The Midnight Patrol" it went under the working titles "Calling Car Thirteen" and "Calling All Cars". See more »
[sympathetically watching the burglar pound on the sides of the safe with a hammer - - Stan never suspects that the man is really a burglar and not just the store's owner]
What's the matter? Did you lose the combination?
[feigning exasperated embarrassment and disgust]
They're really hard to open, aren't they?
Why don't you try hitting it over here?
I've alrready tried it there.
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Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy were comedic geniuses, individually and together, and their partnership was deservedly iconic and one of the best there was. They left behind a large body of work, a vast majority of it being entertaining to classic comedy, at their best they were hilarious and their best efforts were great examples of how to do comedy without being juvenile or distasteful.
Although a vast majority of Laurel and Hardy's previous efforts ranged from above average to very good ('45 Minutes from Hollywood' being the only misfire and mainly worth seeing as a curiosity piece and for historical interest, and even that wasn't a complete mess), 'Two Tars' for me was their first truly classic one with close to flawless execution. Didn't find 'The Midnight Patrol' quite one of their very best, but it to me still very good.
Admittedly, the story is pretty thin, in fact there's not really much of one, and is pretty standard but the worst asset is the ending, which is both abrupt and mean-spirited in a jarring way.
Despite that, 'The Midnight Patrol' is great fun while also having a definite degree of substance, never less than very amusing and the best moments being classic hilarity. It is never too silly, there is a wackiness that never loses its energy and the sly wit is here, some of the material may not be new but how it's executed actually doesn't feel too familiar and it doesn't get repetitive. It's all simple but it is effective in its simplicity without feeling too thin. Hardy's fishpond scene is a highlight.
Laurel and Hardy are on top form here, both are well used, both have material worthy of them and they're equal rather than one being funnier than the other (before Laurel tended to be funnier and more interesting than Hardy, who tended to be underused). Their chemistry feels like a partnership here too, before 'Two Tars' you were yearning for more scenes with them together but in 'The Midnight Patrol' and on the most part from 'Two Tars' onwards we are far from robbed of that. Their comic timing is impeccable.
'The Midnight Patrol' looks good visually, is full of energy and the direction gets the best out of the stars, is at ease with the material and doesn't let it get too busy or static. The supporting cast support them well.
Concluding, very good. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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