7.7/10
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Block-Heads (1938)

Approved | | Comedy, War | 19 August 1938 (USA)
Stan, who has remained faithfully at his World War I post for twenty years, finally comes home where his best friend, Ollie, takes him in, thus allowing him to discover the many conveniences of the modern world.

Director:

John G. Blystone

Writers:

Charley Rogers (original story and screen play) (as Charles Rogers), Felix Adler (original story and screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Stan Laurel ... Stan
Oliver Hardy ... Ollie
Patricia Ellis ... Mrs. Gilbert
Minna Gombell ... Mrs. Hardy
Billy Gilbert ... Mr. Gilbert
James Finlayson ... Finn - Man on Stairs
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Zeffie Tilbury ... Dowager Seated Near Stairs (scenes deleted)
Edit

Storyline

It's 1938, but Stan doesn't know the war is over; he's still patrolling the trenches in France, and shoots down a French aviator. Oliver sees his old chum's picture in the paper and goes to visit Stan at the Soldier's Home. Thinking Stan is disabled (it's just that he's sitting on his leg), Oliver takes pity on him and takes him home for a nice home-cooked meal. But Oliver's wife has other ideas and leaves him to fend for himself. After blowing up the kitchen, Oliver is helped by his next-door neighbor, Mrs. Gilbert... until the big-game hunting Mr. Gilbert comes home unexpectedly, carrying a shotgun. Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

90 MINUTES of Joy (original poster) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 August 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Just a Jiffy See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hal Roach Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first of four Laurel & Hardy features co-written by Harry Langdon, a comic superstar of the silent era who had fallen on hard times. The premise of "Block-Heads" - with Stan as a WWI veteran in France unaware that the war is over, and his readjustment to society - was adapted from Langdon's 1926 film Soldier Man (1926). Stan Laurel admired Langdon and used him as a gag writer for The Flying Deuces (1939), A Chump at Oxford (1939), and Saps at Sea (1940). See more »

Goofs

When Mr. Gilbert (Billy Gilbert) is talking to the reporters about his hunting trip, you can see the shadow of the boom mic on the wall behind him. See more »

Quotes

Oliver: Why didn't you tell me you had two legs?
Stan: Well, you didn't ask me... I've always had 'em...
Oliver: [sarcastically] You're better now...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: The events and characters depicted in this photoplay are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental, and not our fault! (signed Stan Laurel. Oliver Hardy) See more »

Alternate Versions

In order to make it fit into a TV package in the 50s, it was edited down to a short and retitled "Do It Yourself." See more »

Connections

Remake of Soldier Man (1926) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Possibly The Last Great L&H Picture
22 September 2004 | by Theo RobertsonSee all my reviews

BLOCK-HEADS is set up with an idea which must have seemed totally ridiculous in 1938 but when you stop to consider that Japanese soldiers were being found on remote Pacific islands 30 years after the second world war ended the idea stops being ridiculous and becomes shockingly prophetic

This is possibly the last of the great L&H movies ( FLYING DUECES being the only other contender ) , after this the comedy duo started appearing in studio features that didn't seem to show much respect to their genius , made them slightly off centre and stretched stories out for almost 90 minutes when a 60 page script would have worked much better

This means that BLOCK-HEADS suffers from the mild irritation of so many other Stan and Ollie star vehicles - It's rather episodic . But seeing as it's so funny what have we got to complain about ? Listen out for Stan's tagline " Is there gonna be a fight ? " which is repeated several times and the surreal sequence of closing the blinds on the stairway . Strange when people discuss the films of these two comedy gods they always think of slapstick but forget they were also masters of surrealist visualism too . The funniest moment is probably the final scene in Ollie's apartment involving the married couple from next door

I still think THE LAUREL AND MURDER HARDY CASE is the best of their vehicles but BLOCK-HEADS deserves its own mention as being one of the very last superb Stan and Ollie comedies


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