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...
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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 ... 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 »
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?
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 »
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 »
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 »
After an endless cycle of dish washing, Ollie makes a withdrawal, ending up in the hospital after buying a grandfather clock. Only a generous blood transfusion can help him bounce back; however, is modern medicine prepared for the outcome?
Mrs. Hardy is irate that her husband Oliver spends more time with his friend Stanley than with her. Oliver decides to adopt a baby, hoping that it will keep his wife occupied so that he and... See full summary »
A serious case of emotional neglect brings door-to-door Christmas cards salesmen, Stan and Ollie, at the house of an inconsolable wife who is convinced that her artist husband doesn't love her anymore.
In need of funds, Hardy happens to meet an old friend, now a boxing promoter, and volunteers "Battling Laurel" as the team's prizefighter, only to discover their opponent in the ring is a fearsome old nemesis.
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 shanghai a crew from the sailors at a dockside bar. The comic duo accomplish this by using one of the funniest devices ever put into a movie, and of course it all goes wrong. Once aboard, the captain warns them that whoever says the word "ghost" will get his head twisted from north to south. After much time at sea and many port stops later, one of the drunken sailors falls into a trough of whitewash, terrorizing Stanley and Oliver into blurting out "ghost" in front of the enraged captain, which brings about the story's Laurel and Hardy trademark "another fine mess" ending.Written by
Paul Penna <email@example.com>
Ollie is seen holding a newspaper up in a close up shot but it's down in the next shot. See more »
Joe - Bartender:
[nods and motions for Joe to "set me up with the usual beverage"]
Joe - Bartender:
What's on your mind?
Oh, you know - - same ol' thing... I'm sailin' with the tide and I need a few more hands.
Joe - Bartender:
[in a naive tone of cheerful encouragement, not having heard about the unpleasant reputation of the Captain's ship]
Well, there's plenty of men here, willin' to ship.
Yeah, well, it seems like none o' these mugs wanna ride with me.
[...] See more »
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.
A vast majority of Laurel and Hardy's output ranged from above average to very good, only consider '45 Minutes from Hollywood' of their previous efforts a misfire. 'The Live Ghost' is not one of their best or one of my favourites, but it is close and is still lots of haunting fun. Their filmography was variable before 'Two Tars', from then on the overall quality was better and more consistent.
Didn't find the ending that much of a surprise, anybody who is familiar with their "another fine mess" endings will sort of know what to expect.
'The Live Ghost' is otherwise non-stop funniness from start to finish, with another one of the better first halves for any Laurel and Hardy effort from personal opinion. There is insane craziness that doesn't get too silly, a wackiness that rarely loses its energy and the sly wit is here, some of the material may not be massively innovative but how it's executed actually feels fresh and it doesn't get repetitive. Love the reactions to the "ghost", hilarious indeed. On top of the comic touches, there is some genuine spookiness and suspense as well.
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 from that point and in 'The Live Ghost' we are far from robbed of that.
'The Laurel-Hardy Murder Case' looks good visually, nicely shot with some appropriately creepy touches, has 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 players are solid, especially Walter Long who is quite frightening here.
Concluding, great. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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